A 4.9-degree earthquake triggers panic in a traumatized Albania
A 4.9 magnitude earthquake on the Richter scale shook Albania tonight by spreading panic among the population.
This is the first major tremor after the strong 6.4 degree earthquake of November 26, which caused 51 deaths and a thousand wounded and left 15,000 people homeless.
According to the Albanian Institute of Geoscience, IGJEUM, the quake happened at 21.15 local time (20.15 GMT) and had its epicenter in the village of Bubq, north of the capital, Tirana.
The focal depth was only 7 kilometers.
The earthquake was felt in the capital and other cities such as Durres, Kavaja, Fushe Kruja, Elbasan, the southern Vlora and Gjirokastra in even the neighboring countries of Montenegro, North Macedonia and Kosovo.
So far there have been no victims or material damage, as confirmed by the Ministry of Defense.
Local televisions broadcast images that show people in a panic that hastened to leave their homes, some fires in the streets lit by those who intend to spend the night outdoors and the moment in which several parents flee with their children in the arms of the pediatric emergency room of the university hospital of Tirana.
There are traffic jams in the streets of downtown Tirana and Durres - one of the towns most affected by the autumn earthquake - by the number of people who have decided to drive in their private cars to feel more secure.
Precisely in Durres many have told local media that they prefer to spend the night on the street for fear that their houses, already damaged by the November earthquake, will end up collapsing while they sleep due to aftershocks.
According to the IGJEUM so far there have been two other aftershocks, one of which reached 4.1 degrees.