Disasters & Accidents

One dead, nine injured in Crete earthquake

Athens, Sep 27 (EFE).- A man died after a church collapsed when a magnitude 5.8 earthquake struck the Greek island of Crete on Monday morning, Greek authorities said.

The Fire Service confirmed to Efe that the man was trapped under the ruins of the roof of a small church in the village of Arkalojori, where he was carrying out restoration work when the earthquake caused the dome of the church to collapse.

Civil Protection also confirmed nine people were injured in the quake, which collapsed buildings and electricity poles, blocked roads and caused panic on Greece’s largest island.

Three other people who were trapped were either rescued or managed to get out on their own.

The Geodynamic Institute of the Athens Observatory reported that the earthquake, with a focal depth of 10.4 kilometers, occurred at 09.17 local time (06.17 GMT).

Its epicenter was located on the same island, 24 kilometers northwest of the coastal town of Árvi and 346 kilometers southeast of Athens.

The strong tremor, which lasted about 15 seconds, was also felt in the Cretan capital, Heraklion, where residents took to the streets for fear of aftershocks, as well as on the tourist island of Santorini.

A few minutes later, the first of 10 aftershocks, measuring magnitude 3.7 was felt, followed by another of 4.5.

All schools and public buildings in the Heraklion region were evacuated and have been closed for the time being.

The Greek Minister of Climate Emergency and Civil Protection, Khristos Stylianidis, went to the island to monitor the situation, launched the immediate response plan for earthquake emergencies and sent a C130 Hercules aircraft with a Special Disaster Unit (EMAK) for rescue work.EFE

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