Clean-up work begins after moderate Myanmar earthquake

Clean-up work begins after moderate Myanmar earthquake

By The Associated Press | Posted - Mar. 14, 2017 at 7:39 a.m.


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TAIKKYI, Myanmar (AP) — Clean-up work began Tuesday as aftershocks continued to rattle villages near Myanmar's biggest city a day after a 5.1 magnitude earthquake injured more than two dozen people and shook homes and temples.

The epicenter of Monday night's quake was about 70 kilometers (40 miles) northwest of Yangon.

Military personnel worked with firefighters to check damage to buildings and temples in Taikkyi, the northernmost township in the Yangon region.

U Thila Sa Ra, the abbot of a monastery that suffered damage, described a short but terrifying ordeal.

"First, I was so scared and could not do anything. All the Buddha statues and other items fell from the shrine and all the students from my monastery were screaming," he said. "I myself could not handle the fear at that time. It's not just us, the whole ward was screaming and was so scared."

Officials there said 27 people were treated at hospitals for minor injuries from the main quake and 10 more needed treatment following the aftershocks.

"I think my aunt was the most injured person in our house. She was trapped beneath the debris from the building," said Myat Noe Aye, whose home was damaged by the quake. "I heard when she screamed and I did not see anything, as the electricity was out and I myself could not move. We just saw her fingers poking above the debris and just pulled her out while the neighbors came to help us."

Myanmar is in an active earthquake belt. Many quakes occur in sparsely populated areas, causing relatively little damage. Older buildings and structures are most vulnerable.

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