The tremor occurred at 12:58 p.m. local time (0458 GMT) on Thursday, the Xinhua news agency cited the China Earthquake Networks Center as saying.
The epicenter was monitored at 24.7 degrees north latitude and 97.9 degrees east longitude, with a depth of 10 kilometers.
Over 1,000 houses and apartment buildings collapsed in the quake and 33 of those injured are reported to be in a critical condition in area hospitals. A series of aftershocks, measuring up to 4.7 degrees on the Richter scale, rattled Yingjiang County within 10 minutes from the first jolt.
The worst of China’s earthquakes in recent years was the Sichuan earthquake, which took place on May 12, 2008. About 70,000 people were killed and at least 4.8 million people were made homeless.
Most of the buildings that collapsed were in rural areas and did not adhere to building codes.
The eight-magnitude Sichuan earthquake was the deadliest to strike China since the 1976 Tangshan quake, which killed 240,000 people.
China Earthquake Administration has sent experts to the quake-hit region in Yingjiang County in southwest China’s Yunnan Province to offer expertise and direct relevant work, the administration said Thursday.
The administration said in a statement on its website that it initiated a grade III emergency response after the quake and dispatched a team of experts to the quake zone, headed by an official with the administration’s emergency relief bureau.
The provincial earthquake bureau in Yunnan also sent two teams to the quake-hit region to collect information about the quake and conduct on-site monitoring, it said.
An earthquake measuring 5.8 on the Richter Scale jolted Yingjiang County at 12:58 a.m. Beijing Time Thursday, according to the China Earthquake Networks Center.
The epicenter, with a depth of 10 kilometers, was monitored at 24.7 degrees north latitude and 97.9 degrees east longitude, the center said.
The quake caused heavy damage in Yingjiang as the epicenter is only about three kilometers away from the county. Adjacent counties including Longchuan, Lianghe, and Tengchong also felt the tremblor, according to the administration.
As of 3:20 p.m., the quake had left at least 14 people dead and 135 others injured.