Strong French earthquake injures four

LYON: An unusually strong earthquake hit southeastern France on Monday, injuring four people, one of them seriously, authorities said.

The quake, with a magnitude of 5.4, was felt in a vast area between the cities of Lyon and Montelimar which are about 150 kilometres (93 miles) apart, the national seismological office said.

“I was leaning against the oven in my mother’s bakery when I felt the tremor,” said Victoria Brielle, a resident in Privas, some 25 kilometres from the quake’s epicentre.

“A customer’s crockery toppled over and everything broke,” she said.

Another resident in the area, Didier Levy, who lives in a 15th century castle, told AFP that “chandeliers were still trembling” several minutes after the quake.

Levy, who said his dog starting barked even before humans felt the tremors, added: “I have never experienced anything like it, I could feel the trembling even though these wall are one metre thick.”

One person was seriously hurt when a scaffolding collapsed, the regional prefect’s office said.

Three other people in the neighbouring Ardeche region were slightly injured.

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