Ground Report | New Delhi: Earthquake hits Pakistan; At least 20 people have been killed in an earthquake in Pakistan’s Balochistan province in the early hours of Thursday.
The US Geological Survey said the quake had a magnitude of 5.7 and a depth of about 20 km.
The quake affected Sibi, Harnai, Pishin, Qila Saifullah, Chaman, Ziarat and Zhob, including the capital Quetta, resulting in deaths due to collapse of roofs and walls.
As a result of the quake, power was cut off and medical aid was provided to the injured in hospitals.
Earthquake hits Pakistan
The dead included a woman and six children, Sohail Anwar Hashmi, a provincial government official, told AFP.
Provincial Home Minister Mir Ziaullah Lango also confirmed the deaths.
Naseer Nasir, head of the Balochistan Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA), told AFP that the quake had killed 15 to 20 people so far, but warned that the death toll could rise.
The worst-hit area was Harnai, a remote mountain town in Balochistan, where a lack of paved roads, electricity and mobile phone coverage hampered relief efforts.
The quake caused power outages in the area and forced paramedics to work without flashlights at a government hospital.
We were working without electricity with the help of flashlights and mobile phone flashlights,” Zahoor Tareen, a senior official at the government-run Harnai Hospital, told AFP.
“Most of the injured had fractured hands and feet. Dozens of people were sent back after first aid, while 40 seriously injured people were sent to Quetta in ambulances.
Pakistan is located in the region where the Indian and Eurasian tectonic plates meet, which causes earthquakes here.
A magnitude 7.5 earthquake in Pakistan and Afghanistan in October 2015 killed at least 400 people.
Earlier, on October 8, 2005, a magnitude 7.6 earthquake shook the country, killing more than 73,000 people and leaving millions homeless.