Members of a paramilitary troop head for earthquake-stricken areas in Yutian County, Hotan, northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Feb. 12, 2014. A total of 260 paramilitary troop members have been dispatched to Yutian County for disaster relief work, after a 7.3-magnitude earthquake struck the county at 5:19 pm Wednesday. The disaster relief team is estimated to arrive at Yutian's earthquake-stricken areas on the early morning of Feb. 13. (Xinhua/Zhou Mi)
URUMQI, Feb. 12 (Xinhua) -- Sections of railways were temporarily suspended after a 7.3-magnitude quake hit northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region Wednesday afternoon, according to local authorities.
The railway administration of Urumqi suspended a section from Hotan to Moyu on the Kahe Railway, which links Kashgar and Hotan, for safety reasons.
A total of 531 passengers were stranded at Moyu.
Service resumed at 6:52 p.m. after safety and security checks.
The earthquake struck Yutian County in the prefecture of Hotan at 17:19 p.m., according to the China Earthquake Networks Center.
The epicenter, at a depth of 23 km, was monitored at about 36.1 degrees north latitude and 82.5 degrees east longitude, the center said.
An ensuing 5.7-magnitude quake hit the same area at 5:24 p.m. at a depth of 5 km, followed by several quakes below 5-magnitude.
So far, no casualties have been reported.
The quake was felt strongly by residents in Hotan, Yutian and Moyu.
The epicenter was in a sparsely populated area with an average altitude of 5,000 meters. It was more than 50 km away from the nearest settlement, Aqqan village in Yutian County, and more than 900 km away from the regional capital of Urumqi.
Local residents said the houses near the epicenter are all earthquake-resistant and nomads are less likely in the mountainous areas where the epicenter was located during winter.
Xinjiang started an earthquake-resistant housing project in 2004.
Authorities in Aqqan village said there were no casualties as of 7 p.m. in the village, only a few houses were damaged.
President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang ordered concerted effort to guarantee safety and property after the quake.
Local authorities and departments were urged to check disaster situations, conduct emergency management and strengthen seismic monitoring.
A 5.4-magnitude quake hit the same place Tuesday morning, affecting more than 700 local residents.
BEIJING, Feb. 12 (Xinhua) -- A 7.3-magnitude earthquake hit northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region on Wednesday, according to the China Earthquake Networks Center (CENC). No casualties have been reported.
The epicenter, with a depth of 12 km, is located at Yutian County in southwest Xinjiang, or about 36.1 degrees north latitude and 82.5 degrees east longitude. Full story
BEIJING, Feb. 12 (Xinhua) -- Chinese authorities have dispatched a work team to northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region to check the disaster situation and direct rescue work after two earthquakes hit the region Wednesday.
The Ministry of Civil Affairs and the National Commission for Disaster Reduction initiated an emergency disaster relief response soon after 5:19 p.m. when a 7.3-magnitude quake struck. Full story