On March 22, a 7.3 magnitude earthquake hit China's Xinjiang Autonomous Region and a smaller quake struck Yunnan Province, leaving more than 2,000 houses damaged and over 44,000 people homeless. However, Xinhua News Agency did not report any injuries.
The earthquake hit at 6:30 a.m. with the epicenter located about 140 miles southeast of Yunann Province at a depth of 14 miles. According to the Xinjiang Civil Administration Department, the stricken area includes the Yutian, Cele and Luopu counties.
Preliminary investigations show that 20,480 families and 44,365 people were affected by the earthquake. The damages include 87 collapsed houses, 104 collapsed barns, 133 collapsed nurseries as well as 1,987 damaged rooms. The damages are estimated at 10.585 million yuan (US$1.3 million).
On March 21, an earthquake measuring 5.0 on the Richter Scale hit the border of Yunnan's Yingjiang County and Myanmar at 8:30 p.m., according to ChinaNews.com. The epicenter of the earthquake was located at the Langsu Village and Tongbiguang Township, which is close to the Myanmar border and about 25 miles southwest of Yingjiang County. The earthquake was followed by several aftershocks and affected the entire county.
Latest reports have shown that after the earthquake, 7 houses had collapsed, 3,654 rooms were damaged, and 20 middle school and elementary school buildings were damaged. In addition, 385 meter-long cracks were found on various walls and 68 meters of wall had collapsed.