Strong quake felt in central Italy

ROME — A strong earthquake hit central Italy on Wednesday evening, local media reported.

The 5.4-magnitude tremor had its epicenter in the province of Macerata in the Marche region, Ansa news agency reported, citing the National Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (INGV).

The quake struck at 7:11 p.m. local time, and was clearly felt in other provinces of Marche, in the cities of Perugia and Ancona, and as far as in the capital Rome, which lies some 230 km to the west.

It toppled some buildings near the epicenter, but no casualties were reported in the immediate aftermath of the event.

The temblor would be linked to the major quake that struck central Italy only two months ago, La Repubblica newspaper reported, citing an INGV expert.

“This quake occurred within the area already hit (by the previous one). It might be the opening of a new fault line,” seismologist Alessandro Amato said, according to La Repubblica online site.

On August 24, the central regions of Lazio and Marche were hit by a 6.0-magnitude earthquake that killed 298 people and injured some 400, leaving several thousands displaced. PNA/