A series of light earthquakes shook Chiang Mai early yesterday morning causing minor damage to a number of buildings including archaeological sites, temples and schools.
The Earthquake Observation Division of the Meteorological Department said a 3.7-magnitude quake occurred 3 kilometres underground in Long district of Phrae at 1.39am. Tremors hit adjacent areas in Sung Men, Wang Chin, and Den Chai districts.
Later at 4.36am, a 4.1-magnitude quake was recorded 2km under tambon Mae Khue of Doi Saket district, Chiang Mai. The tremors were felt in Lamphun and Phayao. Local residents also felt the tremors in parts of Chiang Mai in Doi Saket, Muang, San Kamphaeng, Mae Rim, and San Sai districts.
The Royal Irrigation Department said the three major dams in Chiang Mai -- Mae Kuang Udom Thara Dam in Doi Saket district, Mae Ngat Somboon Chon Dam in Mae Taeng district, and Mae Ta Lob Luang Dam in Chai Prakan district -- as well as Huay Mae Hong Son Dam in Mae Hong Son's Muang district, were not affected.
However, the earthquakes caused structural cracks in buildings at Wat Phra That Doi Saket in Doi Saket district. Stucco walls situated around the temple's entry collapsed, but its Buddhist relics were unaffected by the tremors.
The 7th Regional Office of Fine Arts inspected archaeological sites in other temples including Wat Ram Poeng in Muang district. About five sites in temples in Muang district were affected by the quake, the office said.
Nonthawat Wanna, mayor of tambon Mae Khue, said two houses in his tambon had cracks due to the quakes, while Mae Khue Wittaya School had cracks on the lower floor and third floor of the building including the ceiling of the school's library. No casualties were reported, Mr Nonthawat said.