Two dead and 38 injured as earthquake hits Iran
A 5.1 magnitude earthquake has hit northern Iran early in the day on Friday resulting in two deaths and 38 injuries. People in the surrounding area have fled their homes.
The earthquake’s epicentre was Mount Damavand, Iran’s highest peak. The mountain is volcanic, however, experts do not believe the earthquake to have resulted from volcanic activity. According to state media cited by Reuters, there were 40 aftershocks but these were milder and caused no tangible damage.
Local residents were urged to observe social distancing if they were spending the night outside to prevent the spread of covid-19, which has so far resulted in the deaths of 6,541 people in the Islamic republic. They were also assured that supplies of petrol are still plentiful, as many of them rushed to fill up their cars.
Among the fatalities were a young woman in Tehran, aged 21, who suffered heart failure and a man in Damavand, aged 60, who suffered a fatal head injury.
According to local authorities in Tehran, only 38 of those who were injured required hospital treatment.
Due to the presence of major fault lines, Iran is very prone to earthquakes. In 2003, the ancient city of Bam was destroyed by a 6.6 magnitude earthquake in the Kerman province and 31,000 people were killed.