Seismologists warn strong aftershocks to follow Greek quake

June 9th, 2008 - 5:18 pm ICT by IANS  

Athens, June 9 (DPA) Seismologists warned Monday that the strong earthquake that struck southwestern Greece over the weekend, killing two and injuring more than 150, will be followed by a strong aftershock. One man was found dead after the roof of his house collapsed in the village of Kato Achaia and a 80-year-old woman died from her injuries after the 6.5 Richter quake struck Sunday afternoon.

The Athens Geodynamic Institute said the quake’s epicenter was approximately 220 km west of Athens, near the western Peloponnese port city of Patras.

More than 150 people suffered injuries, the majority of them minor, and 200 homes were damaged.

The earthquake, which was felt as far away as southern Italy, the northern port city of Thessaloniki, the Ionion islands and Athens, caused panicked residents to rush out onto the streets.

Television reports showed many residents, too scared to return to their homes, spending the night outdoors and in cars.

Seismologists said they were expecting a strong aftershock with a magnitude of about 5 or 5.5 in the next few days.

They have warned people not to stay in damaged buildings and to stay calm.

In January, a 6.5 earthquake struck the Peloponnese but no deaths were reported. The last deadly earthquake to hit Greece was in 1999, killing 143 people.

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