A very strong earthquake registered by the USGS as M6.6 hit western Sichuan, China at 04:52 UTC (12:52 local time) on September 5, 2022. The agency is reporting a depth of 10 km (6.2 miles). EMSC is reporting the same magnitude and depth. The China Earthquake Networks Center (CENC) is reporting M6.8 at a depth of 16 km (10 miles).
The epicenter was located 43.7 km (27.1 miles) SE of Kangding (population 100 000), 137.2 km (85.3 miles) SW of Linqiong (population 55 587), and 201.2 km (125 miles) WSW Chengdu (population 7 415 590), Sichuan, China.
20 000 people are estimated to have felt very strong shaking, 119 000 strong, and 1 304 000 light.
The USGS issued a Yellow alert for shaking-related fatalities. Some casualties are possible.
An Orange alert was issued for economic losses. Significant damage is likely and the disaster is potentially widespread. Estimated economic losses are less than 1% of GDP of China. Past events with this alert level have required a regional or national level response.
Overall, the population in this region resides in structures that are vulnerable to earthquake shaking, though resistant structures exist. The predominant vulnerable building types are adobe block and unreinforced brick with mud construction.
Recent earthquakes in this area have caused secondary hazards such as landslides that might have contributed to losses.
According to the CCTV, at least 21 people have been killed, of which 14 people in Shimian County and 7 in Luding County. More than 30 people were injured.
The quake caused landslides, damaged homes and roads, as well as water and electricity supply and telecommunications.
One landslide blocked a rural highway, the Ministry of Emergency Management said.
Sichuan province has activated the second-highest level of emergency response for the earthquake and more rescue forces are rushing to the epicenter area.
The death toll rose to at least 65 on September 6. More than 200 people were injured, of which 50 seriously.
At least 10 people are unaccounted for.
The quake destroyed more than 250 homes.
The death toll those to 93 on September 11, but there are still 25 people missing.
Estimated population exposure to earthquake shaking
Selected cities exposed
Featured image credit: TW/SAM, Google
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