URUMQI, Aug. 9 (Xinhua) -- Three villagers were rushed to hospital after their home collapsed in a 6.6-magnitude earthquake that jolted Jinghe County in Bortala Mongolian Autonomous Prefecture in northwest China's Xinjiang Wednesday morning.
According to the China Earthquake Networks Center (CENC), the earthquake occurred at 7:27 a.m. (Beijing Time).
Many residents in Jinghe County reached by Xinhua reporters by telephone said strong tremors were felt at the time of the quake.
Wang Xinjiang, a local resident, said his families were waken up by the continuous jolts while household articles fell from high places when the quake came. Many residents ran out of their homes to open places.
People in neighboring cities of Urumqi, Changji, Yining and Karamay felt strong tremors that lasted 10 to 20 seconds at the time of the quake.
The epicenter was monitored at 44.27 degrees north latitude and 82.89 degrees east longitude. The quake struck at a depth of 11 km, the CENC said in a statement.
The epicenter was 37 km from Jinghe County seat, 93 km from the prefectural capital of Bole city, and 383 km from Urumqi.
According to the big data analysis of mobile population carried out by the regional government, about 760 people were within 20 km of the epicenter, and about 53,000 were within the 50-km range.
Both the state and regional earthquake administrations have activated emergency responses and sent working teams to assist earthquake relief works.
Jinghe County has a population of about 150,000 based on the 2014 census. A total of 65 quakes greater than magnitude 3 were recorded within 200 km of the epicenter over the past five years, with the current one the greatest.