Western Tibet rocked by third earthquake this month

Updated: 2008-01-23 21:39

Lhasa -- An earthquake measuring 5.5 on Richter Scale hit Gerze county in western Tibet Autonomous Region at 2:43 am Beijing Time on Wednesday, the third quake in the region this month.

The epicenter was located at 32.4 degrees north and 85.2 degrees east, about 100 km to the east of Gerze county seat in Ngari Prefecture, according to the China Seismological Monitoring Network.

An earthquake measuring 6.9 on the Richter Scale rocked the same area on January 9 followed by another of six degrees on January 16.

Hong Xuefeng, an official with the prefectural government of Ngari, said the three earthquakes had affected almost 2,000 people in 394 households, damaged 331 houses and 140 sheep pens, leaving losses estimated at 3.86 million yuan (US$533,000).

The occupants of at-risk homes have been accommodated in tents. The prefectural and county governments have allocated funds, food and tents for the area.

There were no reports of casualties.

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