Monday, May 5, 2014

6.0 quake in northern Thailand

An earthquake with a magnitude of 6.0 on the Richter scale struck the northern province of Chiang Rai at 6.08pm Monday, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS) There were no immediate reports of casualties. The quake was detected at the depth of 7.4 kilometres underground in Mae Lao district. People sensed the shake in many northern provinces, such as Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai and Lampang.

People on high rises in Bangkok also felt it.

People in the North posted on social media that the shake was noticeable and merchandise fell from shelves at local shops and department stores. Ceiling tiles fell at Chiang Rai airport and passengers immediately ran out of its passenger terminal. Netizens posted pictures of big cracks on buildings and roads and a broken Buddha image in Phan district, Chiang Rai. "People living in three storey buildings got dizzy," said Jane Suchada, a resident of Chiang Mai, which neighbours Chiang Rai.

"We heard that in Mae Rin district (Chiang Mai) there was a blackout, and the hospitals don't have electricity," she said by phone.

Somchai Khemphet, adviser to the mayor of tambon Wiang Lor in Phayao's Chun district, said the roof of his house caved in from the height of about 2.50 metres but no one was injured. Other houses of locals were not damaged, he added.

The Seismological Bureau of the Meteorological Department and the National Disaster Warning Centre later said the epicentre of the earthquake was in tambon Mae Or in Phan district in Chiang Rai. The quake was measured 6.3 on the Richter scale and happened 10 kilometres underground for a few minutes.

The earthquake affected buildings, roads, sources of energy and communication systems in a 24-kilometre radius which covers Phan, Muang Chiang Rai, Mae Lao, Mae Suai and Wiang Pa Pao districts. Aftershocks are expected. There were also reports of blackouts in Phan district while staff of Chiang Mai airport suspended its service for runway examination. View our policies at and
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