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Officials, residents worry about safety after 5.1-magnitude quake

Rescue workers inspect a damaged building after an earthquake in Taikkyi Township, Rangoon Division, on 14 March 2017. (Photo: Reuters)

Burmese authorities on Tuesday said they were worried about the safety of a town in the northwest of Rangoon Division, after it was hit by a magnitude 5.1 earthquake the night before.

Twenty-four people have been hospitalised with minor injuries and no deaths have been confirmed, Burma’s Red Cross said on Tuesday.

Pagodas, monasteries and houses were damaged, window panes smashed, and many two-storey buildings have collapsed, they added.

In a hospital compound in the small town of Taikkyi, a tent with hospital beds was set up to treat quake victims.

Ma Toe said she had been trapped under her two-storey home with her mother.

“I shouted out loud for help. The electricity was off and it was totally dark at that time. Our neighbours came to help us and pull us out,” she said.

The earthquake jolted buildings in Burma’s largest city and commercial hub Rangoon on Monday at about 8:50 p.m. There were no immediate reports of major damage or power cuts in the city.

The US Geological Survey said the epicentre was 69 kilometres (43 miles) northwest of Rangoon near Taikkyi Township, at a depth of 10 kilometres.