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M5.4 Aftershock Jolts County near Lhasa

An aftershock measuring 5.4 on the Richter scale jolted Damxung County in southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region at 10:07 PM on Wednesday, the China Earthquake Administration said.

The epicenter was 29.8 degrees north and 90.4 degrees east, and was 9 km underground, according to the State Seismological Network.

There was no report of casualties at the epicenter but one house collapsed, according to the quake-relief headquarters.

Damxung, 82 km from Tibet's capital Lhasa, was hit by a 6.6-magnitude earthquake and a 5.2-magnitude aftershock on Monday. At least 10 people were killed.

Cars were shaken for a few seconds in Yangyi Village, the worst-hit area in the first quake, but no major damage was reported in the county, according to Zhu Quan, head of the Tibet earthquake bureau.

However, Lhasa residents felt the aftershock and poured into the streets carrying food, drinking water and blankets. Some said they would spend the night outside out of safety concerns.

Dainzhen, 33, sat in his car along with his wife in the square of Ramogia Monastery. "More than 50 neighbors decided to sleep here tonight because our 20-year-old house seems not safe," he said.

However, experts said the aftershock was a natural process during the quake force recession.

Zhu said there was no need to panic.

(Xinhua News Agency October 9, 2008)

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