January 12, 2018, 2:15 pm
A strong 6.0-magnitude earthquake hit a remote region of central Myanmar early on Friday (Jan 12), the US Geological Survey said.
The shallow quake struck some 40 kilometres (24 miles) west of the town of Pyu, the USGS said. It was followed by three weaker tremors in the region, all of magnitudes 5.3, the survey reported.
"There is a low likelihood of casualties and damage," USGS said, but noted that residential structures in the region are typically vulnerable to earthquake shaking.
The epicentre was located in a sparsely populated region between the capital Nay Pyi Taw to the north and commercial hub Yangon to the south, at least 150 kilometres from each.
Earthquakes are relatively common in Myanmar, where six strong quakes of 7.0 magnitude or more struck between 1930 and 1956 near the Sagaing Fault, which runs north to south through the centre of the country, according to the USGS.
A powerful 6.8-magnitude earthquake in the ancient capital Bagan in central Myanmar killed three people in 2016, also toppling spires and crumbling temple walls at the tourist destination.