An natural disaster measuring 6.8 on the Richter scale had hit western China in 2013, killing at least 268 people.
Some people were buried after their adobe homes collapsed, said Wang Fuyou, Communist Party chief of Taxkorgan county, according to the official Xinhua news agency.
In this photo released by Xinhua News Agency, residents gather near damaged houses following an natural disaster in Kuzigun Village in Taxkorgan County, northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Thursday, May 11, 2017.
Eight people have been confirmed dead and 11 others were injured in the quake jolted Taxkorgan County in Xinjiang at 5:58 a.m. Thursday. Most houses in the area were made of wood and mudbricks or rock, it said.
The U.S. Geological Survey says the quake at just before 6 a.m. Thursday (2158 GMT Wednesday) had a magnitude of 5.4 and struck at a depth of 10 kilometers (6 miles).
The quake reportedly hit very close to the earth's surface, causing more shaking at the surface. The mountainous county reportedly has a population of 33,000.
Some 80 aftershocks have been felt in the area in the hours that followed, the state news agency Xinhua said. China's deadliest quake recorded 7.9 magnitude with a depth of 19 kilometres (12 miles).