Strong Earthquake Hits China's Qinghai Province

A strong earthquake measuring 6.5 hit a sparsely populated area in China's western province of Qinghai on Monday, shaking buildings in the remote mining city of Golmud and the regional capital, Xining.

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) originally put the magnitude of the quake at 6.7 but quickly revised it down to 6.5. China's Xinhua news agency put the magnitude of the tremor at 6.3.

State television said there had been no reports of deaths or injuries.

"We are on the tenth floor, so I felt a very strong tremor 10 minutes ago, but there's been no damage," said a Xining government official who only gave her surname, Wang.

Shaking was also felt in Golmud, an industrial city dependent upon potassium mining.

The USGS said the epicenter of the quake was 161 km (101 miles) north-northeast of Golmud at a depth of 9.9 km (6.2 miles).

Xinhua said some mud houses in Da Qaidam, near the epicenter, had cracks in their walls and a few huts had collapsed. Schools have also been closed.

The county hit by the quake has one of the largest lead-zinc mines in China, Xinhua said, but an official at Western Mining said the company had not received any reports of damage at its facilities.