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Earthquakes damage 218 housing units in Khorasan province of Iran

The earthquakes which hit the the northeastern part of the Khorasan on Thursday and Friday has damaged 218 housing units in 19 villages in the area, said the Head of provincial Natural Disaster Headquarters Vahid Brackchi in Mashhad on Saturday, IRNA reported.

The tremors measured 5.2, 3.9 and 3.8 degrees on the Richter scale.

He told IRNA due to the sheer force of tremors, the aftershocks as well as vulnerable structure of houses in the area, "19 villages were destroyed and over 540 more housing units damaged."

"Fortunately tremors did not cause fatalities and had only one injury," he said.

At least 25,000 people were killed in a 7 plus-degree earthquake which struck Tabas in September 16, 1978.

Iran sits on some of the world's active seismic faultlines and tremors of mild magnitude are almost a daily occurrence. Since 1991, at least 17,000 Iranians have died in earthquakes.

An earthquake expert said last month that based on seismological studies carried out in Tehran, an earthquake comparable to the recent one that hit Japan will cause material losses higher than the gross domestic product (GDP).

Farid Mehdian added that such tremor will cause close to 500,000 deaths, two million injuries and render six million homeless.

He added that an activation of 'Ray' faultline will cause 55 percent of Tehran buildings to be either destroyed or severely damaged.

... Payvand News - 7/6/03 ... --

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