BANGKOK — A strong earthquake of magnitude 6.8 struck northeastern Myanmar Thursday evening near the borders of Thailand and Laos, shaking buildings as far away as Bangkok, about 480 miles to the south.
The epicenter was about 70 miles north of the Thai border city of Chiang Rai, but Thai television said little damage had been reported there. It said a 55-year-old woman had died in the border town of Mae Sai when a wall collapsed on her while she was sleeping. There were no immediate reports of damage from within Myanmar or from Luang Prabang, a tourist town not far away in Laos. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said the quake was too far inland to raise a danger of a tsunami.
The United States Geological Survey said the earthquake was just six miles deep, meaning that severe shaking could have caused major damage to buildings in the area. It also reported a smaller quake, of 4.8 magnitude, about a half-hour later.
“I felt I was swaying like a child in a cradle,” said Nutpisut Thongkika, 50, a teacher, in a telephone interview from Chiang Rai. “The situation here was very chaotic when the earthquake hit.”
Trees were swaying, she said, and she had to hold on to a pole to keep her balance.
Sometimes the only sane answer to an insane world is insanity.
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