Strong quake hits Greek island, no major damage reported

View of the beach called gerakas on the Greek island of Zakynthos. The island was hit with a 6.8-magnitude earthquake on Thursday

View of the beach called gerakas on the Greek island of Zakynthos. The island was hit with a 6.8-magnitude earthquake on Thursday

A destructive natural disaster struck approximately 133.5 kilometres southwest of Patras, with tremors hitting the tourist hotspot of Zakynthos at 1.50am local time on Friday morning (11.50pm on Thursday).

Greek authorities initially issued a tsunami warning then withdrew the alert.

The quake was centred 34km south-west of Zakynthos in the Ionian Sea. It struck shortly after midnight and cut power to the main town.

Both the US Geological survey and the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre both assessed the quake to be of a manitude of 6.8.

The natural disaster rattled the whole of western Greece and was strongly felt in the capital, 174 miles to the north-east of Zakynthos.

From first reports, immeasurable damage has occurred at the Tower of the Castro Monastery in Strofades.

'We are not facing any particular problems, ' Zakynthos Mayor Pavlos Kolokotsas told Greek state broadcaster ERT. Firefighters in Calabria, Puglia and Sicily received thousands of telephone calls seeking information about the quake. More than 140 people were killed in an quake north of Athens in 1999.

The quake was fairly shallow, according to the USGS, just 14km below the seabed, which would have amplified shaking.

The user added in a separate tweet: "As an American expat living here in Greece most of the year, I thought I had experienced earthquakes before".

The EMSC European quake agency said sea levels had risen slightly, by about 20 cm (7.87 inches), but the increase could be higher locally.

A 6.6 Richter natural disaster rocked the island of Zakynthos and has been felt all over Greece, causing severe damage and power outages on the island.

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