Quake measuring 5.4 rattles southern China, but no injuries reported

Epicentre located in Guangxi region but tremors felt as far away as Hong Kong

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 31 July, 2016, 8:08pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 31 July, 2016, 8:11pm

An earthquake measuring 5.4 struck Wuzhou city in the southwestern region of Guangxi on Sunday afternoon, with tremors being felt in neighbouring Guangdong and Hunan provinces as well as Hong Kong.

No injuries have been reported, although some residential buildings were damaged in Hezhou city, which is 36km from the epicentre.

The quake struck at a depth of about 10km in Cangwu county outside Wuzhou at 5.18pm, according to China Earthquake Networks Centre.

Train service in the area had been suspended and tracks were being checked for damage, China National Radio reported, citing the Nanning railway bureau. Residents posted photos online showing cracks in roads and large stones and boulders thrown down from hills.

Wuzhou residents said they felt tables and chairs “shake” for about two to three minutes and heard a low rumble.

The Hong Kong Observatory said it received 470 reports in two hours from the city’s residents who felt the tremors.

A woman surnamed Lo, who lives in Cheung Sha Wan, said she felt the quake at about 5:20pm and it lasted for more than 10 seconds.

“I was using the computer when it started to shake,” she said. “I could also see a towel hanging on the window frame shake even though the window was shut.”

Mok Hing-yim, a senior scientific officer at the observatory, said most of the reports it received were from people who felt the tremors indoors, and likened the vibration to a passing light truck.

Mok said that according to a scale that graded a quake’s impact on people, Hong Kong recorded a weak intensity of three out of 12.