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5.3 magnitude rocks southern Greece, shaking felt in Athens

By Mark Puleo, AccuWeather staff writer
July 19, 2019, 10:47:14 AM EDT

Greece earthquake damage

Man walks by a damaged car following an earthquake in Athens, Friday, July 19, 2019. The Athens Institute of Geodynamics gave the earthquake a preliminary magnitude of 5.1 but the U.S. Geological Survey gave it a preliminary magnitude of 5.3. The Athens Institute says the quake struck at 2:38 p.m. local time (1113 GMT) about 26 kilometers (13.7 miles) north of Athens.

A magnitude 5.3 earthquake rocked the area of Magoula, Greece, just a few miles away from capital of Athens around 2:13 p.m. local time (7:13 a.m. EST). The quake reportedly shook central Athens.

While there are no initial reports of deaths or injuries, people in Athens were sent running into the streets, the Associated Press reported. There were also reports of people trapped in elevators due to the loss of power.

Greece earthquake

The quake had a depth of 6.2 miles (10 km). The strongest aftershock measured a 4.3 magnitude about an hour after the original earthquake.

Some buildings were lightly damaged and a woman was hurt by falling plaster, according to Greek media outlets. Efthymios Lekkas, the country's head of national earthquake planning and protection agency, told citizens to stay inside their homes.

"Standing outside a building is not a good idea. It is safer for people to stay inside their homes or, if they go outside, they must find an open space," he said.

According to the New York Times, this was the first major quake to hit Athens in 20 years.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

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