Friday October 26, 2012
Elderly man dies as earthquake hits southern Italy
ROME: An elderly man died of a heart attack when a 5.3 magnitude earthquake hit the southern Italian province of Cosenza early Friday, also forcing the evacuation of a local hospital, the Italian Ansa news agency reported.
The quake struck in the early hours causing damage to a number of buildings in the area, the agency added. The 84-year-old victim suffered heart failure as the quake struck and was dead before the emergency services could reach him.
According to the US Geological Survey the quake, with a 5.3 magnitude, at a depth of 3.8 kilometres, had its epicentre six kilometres south east of Mormanno town in the province of Cosenza in the Calabria region of southern Italy.
Residents rushed into the streets fearing building collapses and the Mormanno hospital was evacuated.
Many homes in the centre of the town suffered damage and police said it would take some hours to evaluate the scale of the problem.
"There was a lot of panic, but happily there are no injured," Mormanno mayor Guglielmo Armentano told Ansa.
"In our historic centre, there are some damaged buildings. As a precaution we have evacuated the hospital," he added. - AFP