7 dead, 45 injured as 5.6 earthquake hits 60km from Iran’s Bushehr nuclear plant
The head of Iran's Crisis Management organization, Hassan Qadami,
confirmed the initial 30 casualties to IRNA. However, Bushehr's
Governor, Fereydoon Hasanvand, updated the figure to 45 on
Thursday night. He added that 'total calm' had settled in the
Fars news agency placed the death toll higher, at eight, adding
that helicopters would be posted to the area on Friday to assess
the extent of the damage.
"There were some houses and electricity poles damaged. Rescue
teams have been dispatched," local governor Alireza Khorani
told Fars before full news of the wounded emerged.
Tremors were registered at a depth of 16.4 kilometers and some 14
kilometers from the nearest city of Borazjan in Bushehr Province.
While USGS measured the quake at 5.6, the local Seismological
Center of Tehran University’s Geophysics Institute has said that
the earthquake measured 5.7 on the Richter scale.
Social media pages in Saudi Arabia have said that tremors from
the quake were felt in the kingdom's eastern province, across the
Gulf from Iran, Reuters reported. No damage to the nuclear plant
in nearby Bushehr has been reported.
Bushehr, Iran’s only power-producing nuclear reactor, suffered
damage caused by earthquakes which struck Iran in April and May. Cracks of several meters long reportedly
appeared in at least one section of the structure, according to
diplomats from countries monitoring Iran’s
nuclear program, cited by AP.
Tehran has not denied or confirmed this information. Following
the quakes, one of which was 7.7, and the other measured 6.2 on
the Richter scale, Iran gave assurances that the plant was
technically sound and was built to withstand quakes up to
The Bushehr nuclear power plant - the first civilian nuclear
plant in the Middle East – was launched in 2011 under a contract
for finishing the plant that Iran and the Russian Ministry for
Atomic Energy signed in 1995.
Bushehr has no link to nuclear weapons production and cannot be
used to develop such technology.