On Tuesday, a magnitude 5.6 earthquake occurred in Gansu, China. The earthquake was recorded at a depth of 10 kilometers (approximately 6.21 miles).
The German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ) reported that this seismic event occurred at 7:32 pm local time and was situated at a depth of 10 kilometers. Shallow earthquakes tend to be more strongly felt than those occurring at greater depths since they are closer to the Earth’s surface. It’s important to note that the precise magnitude, epicenter, and depth of the earthquake could potentially be adjusted in the coming hours or minutes as seismologists analyze data and fine-tune their calculations, or as other agencies release their reports.
A monitoring service has detected three separate reports regarding the earthquake in Gansu, China, with varying magnitude estimates. The Réseau National de Surveillance Sismique (RéNaSS) in France recorded the earthquake as magnitude 5.4, while a citizen-seismograph network called RaspberryShake reported it as magnitude 5.6. These disparities in reported magnitudes are not uncommon in seismic events.
Based on the initial seismic data, it is likely that the earthquake was perceptible to many individuals near the epicenter. However, it is not expected to have caused substantial damage, aside from minor incidents such as objects falling from shelves or broken windows.
In Laojunmiao, a town with a population of 84,800, located 81 kilometers from the epicenter, the earthquake should have been experienced as a gentle shaking. We can assume that the impact would have been relatively minor in this area.
In Jiayuguan City, with a population of 122,400 and situated 116 kilometers away from the epicenter, and in Suzhou, with a population of 72,700 and located 131 kilometers from the epicenter, residents might have experienced weaker tremors, though still unlikely to cause significant disruption.
Notably, the varying magnitude reports and the impact experienced by people in different locations are common in the aftermath of earthquakes, and further assessments may refine these initial findings.