A magnitude 5.9 earthquake shook Heraklion Prefecture on Crete late this afternoon. The quake was centered a few kilometers outside the Viannos Village in the south of the island.
The Athens Geodynamic Institute said the undersea quake occurred at 7:28 p.m. local time (1628GMT; 12:28 p.m. EDT) with its epicenter was at a depth of 44 kilometers. The USGS has no reports of severe damage, and the quake registered green on the Pager and Shakemap indicators.
The tremor was felt in the island’s capital of Heraklion, some 66 kilometers north of the epicenter. The Crete event was preceded by a M 4.3 quake about 81 kilometers WSW of Kýthira, Greece at 2:30 this afternoon.
Greece is one of the most earthquake-prone parts of the world, and Crete itself has a high occurrence of quakes. Most cause little damage and fatalities are rare. However, in 1999 an earthquake near Athens killed 143 people.