Where the area affected is broad and there is a high degree of damage to buildings there is an indication the quake was a higher Richter. Richter goes up as the area affected increases. Richters of 6-7 are also required to effect such damage to buildings. A large number of aftershocks, over 60, were also reported, indicating this was not a local affair. Certainly not a 5.9. Compare the damange done to the recent Alaska 7.9, deemed over 8 by some accounts, where the pipelines were only temporarily disrupted. Honesly in Richter reporting is dead.
- Earthquake in China Topples 2,700 Homes, Kills Two
Reuters, 16 Aug 2003
- An earthquake hit China´s northern region of Inner Mongolia toppling more than 2,700 homes and killing two people, officials said on Sunday. The temblor measuring 5.9 on the Richter scale hit at 6:58 p.m. (6:58 a.m. EDT) on Saturday near the towns of Bairin Zuoqi and Ar Horqin Qi in eastern Inner Mongolia and could be felt as far away as the capital Beijing, about 300 miles to the south. At least 43 people were injured. ... The official Xinhua News agency quoted a local seismological official as saying 24,483 homes were damaged and 2,602 collapsed in 98 villages in the Bairin Zouqi area, calling the earthquake the strongest in the area in 700 years. Xinhua said another 169 homes collapsed in villages near Ar Horqin Qi. The official put the death toll at two and the injured at 43. Xinhua said there were 42 injured, nine of them seriously.
- North China Jolted by Quake
- China's northern regions were rattled by an earthquake measuring 6.1 on the Richter scale that was felt all the way to the capital Beijing. At least two were killed and another 40 injured in Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. A number of houses were found collapsed and China's Seismological Bureau Saturday night sent a rescue team of 30 experts to the quake-hit Inner Mongolia, Xinhua news agency reported. The quake struck at 6:58 pm (1058 GMT) Saturday, Xinhua reported, citing the China Seismological Bureau. The quake hit eastern Inner Mongolia and its epicenter was at latitude 43.9 degrees north and longitude 119.7 degrees east, the bureau said. Rescue teams have been sent to the areas of Bairin Zuoqi and Ar Horqin Qi, Xinhua said. ... The Red Cross said 700,000 people were seriously affected and were in desperate need of relief supplies.