At least 118 people have been killed in north-west China in the country’s deadliest earthquake in 13 years.

The 6.2 magnitude quake hit mountainous Gansu province around midnight on Monday; also shaking neighbouring Qinghai.


Fatalities are expected to rise with hundreds reported injured in icy conditions.

Chinese President Xi Jin Ping has ordered thousands of rescue crew to the region, among the poorest and most diverse in China.


On Tuesday, footage shown on state TV and social media networks showed entire villages split by the quake, as well as collapsed buildings and houses.

Residents who fled their homes were also shown huddling over makeshift fires at hastily erected evacuation camps.


Survivors said the tremors had felt like “being tossed by surging waves”, and recalled rushing out of their apartments.

The epicentre of the quake was in Linxia Hui Autonomous Prefecture, home to many Chinese Muslim groups, including the Hui, Bonan, Dongxiang and Salar people.


Chinese authorities said the quake measured 6.2 on the Richter scale, while the US Geological Survey (USGS) recorded a magnitude of 5.9 and depth of 10km.

About 10 aftershocks have taken place since the earthquake