December 7, 2009 / 11:02 AM / 10 years ago

Malawi shaken by new tremors in uranium mine area

* Six injured in northern Malawi tremors

* Earthquakes measure between 5.1 and 5.8

BLANTYRE, Dec 7 (Reuters) - Earth tremors hit Malawi for a second day on Monday and police said at least six people had been injured, two seriously, and buildings damaged in the uranium-rich northern Karonga district.

Hundreds of people fled their homes when an earthquake first struck on Sunday.

Karonga police spokesman Enock Levason told Reuters a woman and her child had been referred to Mzuzu Central hospital after a wall in their house fell on them. Four other people were being treated at a district hospital.

“The tremors are still occurring. A number of houses and school blocks have been destroyed, but we’re still assessing damage in other remote parts of the district,” he said.

Director of the Malawi Geological Survey Leonard Kalindekafe said his department had recorded 12 occurrences of tremors and continued to monitor the situation.

The tremors started at 1700 GMT on Sunday and residents in Mzuzu, Malawi’s third largest city about 150 km (about 95 miles) south of Karonga, also felt them.

The U.S. Geological Survey reported four earthquakes measuring between 5.1 and 5.8.

In 1989, a 6.6 earthquake killed at least 9 people and injured 100 in central Malawi and left another 50,000 homeless, according to the USGS.

Karonga is the site of uranium mining by Australian firm, Paladin Eenrgy. (Reporting by Frank Phiri; Editing by Charles Dick)

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