A strong earthquake shook Albania early Tuesday, killing at least four people, injuring 150 and collapsing buildings.
The magnitude 6.4 quake was felt most strongly on the cities closest to the coast of the country, according to maps from the U.S. Geological Survey.
The temblor was centered 30 kilometers northwest of the capital, Tirana. It had at a depth of 20 kilometers, USGS said.
The Defense Ministry said a man and a woman were killed when a building collapsed in Thumane, 36 kilometers north of Tirana. It said another person died after jumping from his home to escape shaking from the quake in Kurbin, 50 kilometers north of the capital.
Another person was killed when a building collapsed in Durres, 33 kilometers west of Tirana, emergency officials said. Rescuers were working to take out other people from the building.
Shortly after it hit, famed seismologist Lucy Jones tweeted it would likely caused damage and possibly casualties, considering how close some of the small towns are to the coast. “Some with vulnerable buildings and pretty strong shaking in Tirane,” Jones wrote.
The M6.4 #earthquake that just hit Albania (local time early Tuesday morning) is likely to have caused damage and casualties. Located near the coast, there are several small towns nearby, some with vulnerable buildings and pretty strong shaking in Tirane. https://t.co/nJdjGhVTnM
— Dr. Lucy Jones (@DrLucyJones) November 26, 2019
Authorities reported scores of aftershocks and called on people in the most affected areas to stay out of their homes.
The overall population in this region reside in homes that are a mix of vulnerable and earthquake resistant construction, according to the USGS website.
People reported seeing cracks in their apartment walls. People were seen leaving homes to go to open areas.
Local media reported that a restaurant was destroyed in western Durres.
At least three apartment buildings and the power distribution station were damaged in Thumane.
An earthquake in September in roughly the same area damaged hundreds of homes.
Albania is a neighbor of Italy and borders the Adriatic Sea.