Death toll rises after Myanmar earthquake

  • 25/08/2016

A powerful 6.8 magnitude earthquake has shaken central Myanmar, killing at least three people including two children, local officials say, and damaging some of the famous pagodas in the Southeast Asian nation's ancient capital of Bagan.

The US Geological Survey (USGS) said on Wednesday the quake hit near the town of Chauk, southwest of Mandalay.

Tremors were felt as far away as Thailand, where witnesses reported high rise buildings swaying in Bangkok, and the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka.

A fire department official from regional capital Magwe said two young girls were killed when a riverbank gave way in Yenanchaung township, south of Chauk.

One person was killed and another injured when a tobacco processing factory collapsed in the town of Pakkoku, to the north, the duty officer at the local fire department said.

There were no other confirmed casualties, and early reports suggested limited damage overall.

The quake struck at a relatively deep 84km, the USGS said.

Myanmar is in a seismically active part of the world where the Indo-Australian Plate runs up against the Eurasian Plate.

In March, 2011, at least 74 people were killed in an earthquake in Myanmar near its borders with Thailand and Laos.