A major earthquake struck near Pescara Italy and Rome in the middle of the night on Monday, April 6th. See the developing news, geological maps, photos and a breaking news video here of the 2009 Rome earthquake.

Italy earthquake

Earthquake Italy 2009!

The earthquake in central Italy struck about 50 miles northeast of Rome, 70 miles southeast of Perugia, and 70 miles directly south of Ancona. The nearest small town is Pescaro Italy in the Abruzzo region. The quake initially measured 6.3 on the Richter scale at 3:30 am local time. The official strength is still unsettled as it was earlier described as 6.7. See more details here and here.

By comparison that is about the size of the Oakland, California earthquake in 1989 which collapsed a freeway and caved a section of the Bay Bridge.

Damage reports will be slowcoming in but the earthquake is already described as ‘significant’ with high damage to the old buildings in the area. It is still before 5:00 am local time, dark and cold.

At least 17 people are dead including four small children, and dozens are missing or unaccounted for. Entire building have collapsed while cracks and caved roofs are visible. We will have more damage videos, photos and reports when they become available but see the videos below.

The difference between this earthquake in Italy and a similarly sized one in Calfornia in 1989 is that we are prepared for earthquakes in California and local building ordinances require massive amounts of reinforcement. Italy is a country of stone. Stone buildings, stone houses and stone churches. Although the modern skyscrapers in Rome utilize world class engineering methods, the ancient structures in Rome and the nearby villages are very much as they were 500 years ago.

Italy is no stranger to earthquakes especially in the southern region and Sicily. An hour-drive north of Rome is not the usual place for an epicenter.

See a video below of local damage, earthquake maps and photos when available.

Rome earthquakePascaro earthquakeItaly earthquake
Central Italy Earthquake Maps (Photos)

Rome, Italy Earthquake (Video)