At Least 153 Killed in Iranian Quake – Fars (R I A N)
Date : 2012-08-12 05:18:18
At least 153 people were killed after the earthquake hit northwestern Iran on Saturday, Fars news agency reported. Two powerful tremors measuring 6.4 and 6.3 on the Richter scale stroke on Saturday near the towns of Tabriz and Ahar with their epicenters registered at a depth of 9.8 km, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
"Our access to villages have been cut and we can only contact them by radio transceiver,", the head of Iranian Rescue and Relief Organization Mahmoud Mozaffar told the Mehr news agency, adding that "helicopters and rescuers are on their way to villages."
Iranian emergency services have earlier reported about 90 killed and over 600 injured.
The quakes were also registered in neighboring Azerbaijan but no casualties have been reported, the local Seismology Institute said.
The deadliest quake in Iran was in June 1990, which measured 7.7 points on the Richter scale. About 37,000 people were killed and more than 100,000 injured in the northern provinces of Gilan and Zanjan. The quake devastated 27 towns and about 1,870 villages, according to IRNA news agency.