Saturday, 17 August, 2019

Strong quake near Athens sparks fear

Authorities reported power cuts and people being trapped in elevators Authorities reported power cuts and people being trapped in elevators Credit Pantelis Saitas EPA-EFE REX
Patty Aguilar | 19 July, 2019, 17:14

A strong natural disaster jolted Athens on Friday, knocking out phone and cellphone service, with no immediate reports of damage or injuries.

People in Athens felt the natural disaster as it hit, causing some to run into the streets, per the Associated Press.

News channels ran photos sent in by viewers, showing parked cars in central Athens damaged by fallen masonry.

Mr Petsas added that phone networks had become "overcharged" by the sheer number of users calling to check up on friends and family.

The Athens Institute of Geodynamics gave the natural disaster a preliminary magnitude of 5.1 but the U.S. Geological Survey tagged it as a magnitude of 5.3.

The shock on Friday was caught live in the studios of state broadcaster ERT.

The head of the anti-quake protection agency, Efthymios Lekkas, told Greeks to remain calm. "The capital's buildings are built to withstand a much stronger natural disaster", he said.

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That magnitude 6 quake left 143 people dead and tens of thousands of buildings damaged.

The Institute said there had been seven aftershocks, with the largest measuring 3.1.

The quake, followed by several aftershocks, was felt in different parts of the city.

News media reported electricity outages but said internet connections were still operating.

The natural disaster is the first to hit the Greek capital since 1999.

A police officer stands next to a damaged vehicle following an quake in Athens, Greece, on July 19, 2019.

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