QUETTA: South Pakistan trembled as a colossal earthquake hit in the early morning around 3:30 AM Thursday. Many people died as they were sleeping when the earthquake struck at about 5.7 magnitude. The European Mediterranean Seismological Center (EMSC) stated the epicenter of the earthquake was 120 KM away from East and South-east part of Quetta.
Naseer Nasar, the head of Balochistan’s Provincial Disaster Management authority, stated to AFP that about 20 people had died among them 6 are children, but this toll may increase after further operation.
Many victims died as the roofs and walls slumped in the Balochistan province. Power cut worsen the situation as the workers left with no option than to treat the injured using flashlights. The remote area of Harnai city severely affected as they lacked of communication like paved roads, telecommunication system and also electricity.
Balochistan home minister Mir Zia ullah Langau said, “We are receiving information that 20 people have been killed due to the earthquake,” Suhail Anwar Hashmi, a senior provincial government official stated to AFP, adding that “More than 200 people have been injured”. Hashmi said, “We are soon sending helicopters to the area to help support the rescue operation and to evacuate injured.” Zahoor Tarin, a senior official at the government-run Harnai hospital told AFP, “We were operating without electricity with the help of torches and mobile flashlights. Most of the injured came with fractured limbs. Dozens of people were sent back after first aid,” he stated also adding that “At least 40 people were received with critical injuries”.
Pakistan had some early devastating history of quakes as in October 2015 a 7.5-magnitude quake in Pakistan had killed about 400 people across rugged terrain that impeded relief efforts. The country was also strike by a 7.6-magnitude quake on October 8, 2005, which killed more than 73,000 people and about 3.5 million people become homeless.