Strong China quake kills hundreds

The quake killed hundreds and injured thousands more in the remote area of Yunnan province.
The quake killed hundreds and injured thousands more in the remote area of Yunnan province.
The quake collapsed many houses in Ludian county, Yunnan province.
The quake collapsed many houses in Ludian county, Yunnan province.
People walk among debris after the earthquake.
People walk among debris after the earthquake.
People run past a hillside at risk of landslide after the earthquake.
People run past a hillside at risk of landslide after the earthquake.
The remote mountainous area of Yunnan was badly shaken by the quake, which brought down many buildings, including a school.
The remote mountainous area of Yunnan was badly shaken by the quake, which brought down many buildings, including a school.

A magnitude 6.3 earthquake in southwestern China has killed at least 398 people, left 1,881 injured and caused thousands of buildings, including a school, to collapse.

The US Geological Survey said the quake in a remote area of Yunnan province registered at a shallow depth of 1.6km. Chinese state media said it was felt most strongly in Yunnan as well as in the neighbouring provinces of Guizhou and Sichuan.

The official Xinhua news agency said the epicentre was in Longtoushan town in Yunnan's mountainous Ludian county.

Communications have been seriously affected and rescuers have begun arriving on the scene, the report said.

Pictures posted online by state media showed troops stretchering people away and cars damaged by fallen bricks.

Many people rushed out of buildings onto the street after the quake hit, electricity supplies were cut and at least one school collapsed, Xinhua added, with more than 12,000 houses having collapsed and 30,000 sustaining damage.

Ludian resident Ma Liya told Xinhua the streets were like a "battlefield after bombardment".

The government is sending 2,000 tents, 3,000 folding beds, 3,000 quilts and 3,000 coats to the disaster zone, where heavy rain forecast for the coming days will add to the misery, the report said.

Ludian is home to some 265,900 people, Xinhua added.

This region of China is frequently struck by quakes, with one killing more than 1,400 in the same part of Yunnan in 1974.

A quake in Sichuan in 2008 killed almost 70,000 people.

QUAKE: About 12,000 homes collapsed in Ludian, a densely populated county located around 366km northeast of Yunnan's capital, Kunming, China's official Xinhua News Agency reported.
QUAKE: About 12,000 homes collapsed in Ludian, a densely populated county located around 366km northeast of Yunnan's capital, Kunming, China's official Xinhua News Agency reported.

Reuters