Crews of experts overnight began examining the damage to infrastructure and cultural monuments on the eastern Greek island of Kos after a powerful earthquake killed two tourists and injured nearly 500 others in the Aegean Sea region that stretches to Turkey’s sprawling coast.
Source: 1 NEWS
In Kos, churches, an old mosque, the port’s 14th-century castle and other old buildings suffered in the quake and were being checked by archaeologists and experts from Greece’s Culture Ministry.
Hundreds of residents and tourists spent the night sleeping outdoors on the island, too afraid to return to their homes or hotels after the quake that struck in early Friday (locak time).
Many camped out in parks and olive groves, or slept in their cars or on beach and swimming pool lounge chairs.
The US Geological Survey measured the quake as being of magnitude 6.7, with Greek and Turkish estimates a fraction lower.
Two men, a Turk and a Swede, were killed when a collapsing wall smashed into a popular bar in the Old Town of Kos.
The most seriously injured in Greece were airlifted to hospitals on the mainland and the southern island of Crete, and at least two were still in critical condition Saturday (local time).
The Turkish man’s parents were on the island making arrangements to repatriate his body home by boat, possibly on Sunday (local time).
Dozens of aftershocks have shaken the island, further rattling residents and tourists.
John Grant, a 60-year-old tourist from Britain, said he felt safer sleeping outside.
“I think coming from somewhere that doesn’t have earthquakes, you don’t understand,” he said from his makeshift bed on a lounge chair.
“So to me it was very frightening being in the building. But being outside, I know I’m safe.”
About 350 of the injuries occurred in Turkey, in Bodrum and other beach resorts, as people fled buildings and as the sea swell flung cars off the road and pushed boats ashore.
Seismologists said the shallow depth of the undersea quake was to blame for the damage.