5.3-magnitude earthquake hits central Italy

ROME -- A strong earthquake hit central Italy on Wednesday morning.

The quake carried a magnitude of 5.3 on the Richter scale, and first struck at about 10:25 a.m. local time (0925 GMT) in the province of L'Aquila in the Abruzzo region, Italy's National Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (INGV) stated.

It was registered at a relatively shallow depth of 9 km., the INGV added. No casualty or damage was immediately reported.

Yet, the tremor was felt in the nearby central regions, and as far as in the Italian capital, which lies some 110 km. to the west.

The major highway connecting Rome to the affected areas was temporarily closed to verify its conditions, the managing society said.

Since August 2016, the central areas in the Lazio, Marche, and Abruzzo regions have been hit by three major quakes, which left a total of 300 people dead and several thousands displaced.

Source: Philippines News Agency