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Buildings inspected, schools closed, residents sleeping on ships in Cephalonia

Civil engineers began inspecting buildings on the island of Cephalonia, after yesterday's earthquake.and the numerous aftershocks that followed Schools will remain closed on the island, while two cruiseships will host the island's residents.

An earthquake shook the island of Cephalonia on Sunday afternoon. The quake had a magnitude of 5.8 on the Richter Scale, according to the Athens Geodynamic Institute. Its epicentre was six km northeast of the town of Argostoli, the island's capital. However the shocks were felt as far as Athens and Larissa, in Northern Greece.

40 aftershocks have been reported since Sunday night, while more are expected in the coming days or even weeks.

Authorities declared the island in a state of emergency, however no casualties were reported. Many residents of the islands spent the night in their cars after the first shock. With the weather expected to deteriorate in the area, the ferry “Superfast 11” arrived at the island along with“Eleftherios Venizelos” in order to host as many residents as possible until their homes are checked by authorities. Both vessels have a total capacity of 2,000 beds.

Interior Minister Yiannis Michelakis flew to the island yesterday by helicopter to inspect the impact of the quake.

Avalanches have blocked several roads, while the airport building and the hospital of the island have been evacuated since yesterday. Check-in at the airport is done at the police booth at the entrance of the airport. Patients have been transferred to another building, while the residents of a retirement home have been transferred to the St Gerasimos monastery, until the building is checked by authorities.

Power cuts have also been reported, due to aftershocks, however most of them have been already restored.