December 9, 2019 / 7:50 AM / 2 months ago

Quake hits Florence area, trains temporarily suspended

ROME (Reuters) - An earthquake struck north of Florence on Monday morning, sending people fleeing from their homes, damaging some buildings and causing cancellations or severe delays to trains across Italy.

The magnitude 4.8 quake hit the central Apennine Mountains at 3.30 a.m. (0230 GMT), the U.S Geological Survey said. There were no reports of casualties, the fire brigade said.

People in the area scrambled from their homes after the first tremors but there was no major damage “to people or places”, the national civil protection agency said.

Regional governor Enrico Rossi said that there were problems with some buildings and Italian dailies posted pictures of cracks in the walls of the church of San Silvestro in the town of Barberino del Mugello, in the epicenter of the quake.

Train services were suspended as a precaution, including those on the national high speed line, Rete Ferroviaria Italiana said. However, they were resuming slowly several hours later.

High speed lines between Italy’s largest cities “are progressively returning to normality”, Rete Ferroviaria Italiana said. Slower, local lines were also starting to run again while checks continued on some tracks.

The company must conduct checks on the line in the area if an earthquake is registered above a magnitude of 4.

Reporting by Giulia Segreti; Editing by Angus MacSwan, William Maclean

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