More than 100,000 people have been evacuated in Yunnan, said an official with the province’s civil affairs department.
The 5.7 magnitude earthquake hit the border area of Yiliang county of Yunnan and Weining county of Guizhou at 11.19 a.m. and the depth of its epicenter was about 14 km, reported Xinhua.
All the victims were from the city of Zhaotong.
Preliminary investigation showed that more than 20,000 houses were damaged or had collapsed in the quake, according to the official.
As of 1 p.m., the area had been stricken by 16 aftershocks, with the strongest one measuring magnitude-5.6, according to the provincial seismological bureau.
Authorities are transporting thousands of tents, quilts and coats to the quake-hit area.
So far, no casualties have been reported in Guizhou province, but the quake has also damaged or even toppled homes in Weining county, said Chen Bo, an official.