Magnitude 6.3 earthquake strikes Croatia: Here’s what we know so far
An earthquake of magnitude 6.3 hit central Croatia on Tuesday, causing destruction to several buildings and sending panicked people fleeing into streets in a town southeast of the capital Zagreb. According to the local authorities, at least seven people died and dozens were injured.
Emergency services, assisted by the military, were still ploughing through the debris in many towns as night fell and electricity remained out. Here’s what we know so far:
Over 200 homeless
After Croatia was jolted with a big earthquake, many people spent the night in their cars, while nearly 200 people took shelter in a military barracks. Schools unlocked their sports halls for people who could not sleep at home in Sisak, another badly affected town in Croatia. The European Union's Crisis Management Chief, Janez Lenarcic, will visit Petrinja on Wednesday.
Red zone Petrinja
Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic and other ministers from the government rushed to Petrinja after the catastrophe. The biggest part of central Petrinja is in a red zone, that means most of the buildings are not usable. The PM also stated that the army has 500 places ready in barracks to house people, while others will be accommodated in nearby hotels.
No one must stay out in the cold tonight, the prime minister said. Plenkovic said the patients will be evacuated in helicopters with the help of army and ambulances.
Two days two earthquakes
The earthquake, which hit just after noon local time about 30 miles south of the capital Zagreb, could be felt around the Balkans. According to the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre, it is the largest quake to hit Croatia this year. The same area was hit by an earthquake on Monday of magnitude 5.2, followed by many smaller aftershocks on Tuesday.
Slovenia’s nuclear plant closed
Nuclear power plant in Slovenia's Krsko has been closed as a precaution after a 6.2 magnitude earthquake was registered in neighbouring country. "I can confirm the preventive shutdown," spokeswoman Ida Novak Jerele told AFP. The earthquake was felt in several neighbouring nations, including Slovenia and as far away as the Austria’s capital Vienna.