A 5.7-magnitude earthquake shook the Lake Victoria region of East Africa on Saturday, killing at least 16 people in Tanzania, the Governor of Kagera said.
Tanzania’s prime minister Kassim Majaliwa visited injured victims of the earth in Bukoba and said during “this great calamity, we all should stay calm”.
Saturday’s quake was shallow, occurring at a depth of 10 kilometres (six miles).
Salum Kijuu, the Kagera regional commissioner, told Xinhua in a telephone interview that the morning earthquake also left tens of hundreds of houses and other property damaged.
“It is too early to give the exact number of injured people, and the number of damaged property, including houses,” said Kijuu, adding that rescue teams had been deployed to affected areas.
Shallow quakes generally tend to be more damaging than deeper quakes.
Seismic waves from deep quakes have to travel farther to the surface, losing energy along the way, while the shaking from shallow quakes is more intense.
Recent earthquakes in the area have caused secondary hazards such as landslides – the last notable quake in the region was in 2004 and measured 4.7.
Story by The Associated Press, Xinhua and CCTV Africa