An earthquake, also known as a quake, tremor or temblor, is the result of a sudden release of energy in the Earth's crust that creates seismic waves. The seismicity, seismism or seismic activity of an area refers to the frequency, type and size of earthquakes experienced over a period of time.
At the Earth's surface, earthquakes manifest themselves by shaking and sometimes displacement of the ground. When the epicenter of a large earthquake is located offshore, the seabed may be displaced sufficiently to cause a tsunami. Earthquakes can also trigger landslides, and occasionally volcanic activity.
5.8 magnitude quake hits southwest China
A 5.8 magnitude earthquake struck a remote area of southwest China on Saturday at a shallow depth of about 10 kilometres (six miles), the US Geological Survey said.
The quake, which struck at 8:04 am, was centred on Benzilan, in the Sichuan-Yunnan border region, the USGS said.
State media said rescue teams were heading to the mountainous area.
Twin quakes killed at least 95 people in Gansu province in July.
A magnitude 6.6 earthquake in Sichuan province killed about 200 people earlier this year, five years after almost 90,000 people were killed by a huge tremor in the same province.