Quake jolts Greek, Turkish resorts, kills 2, hurts 500

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Quake jolts Greek, Turkish resorts, kills 2, hurts 500
Quake jolts Greek, Turkish resorts, kills 2, hurts 500

KOS, Greece (AP) – A powerful overnight earthquake shook holiday resorts in Greece and Turkey, injuring nearly 500 people and leaving two tourists dead on the Greek island of Kos, where revelers at a bar were crushed in a building collapse.

Some of the injuries were caused as tourists and local residents scrambled out of buildings and even leapt from balconies after the 6.5-magnitude quake struck at about 1:30 a.m. local time.

Several hundred thousand vacationers and locals in the two countries were kept awake by dozens of aftershocks that followed the main quake, with many sleeping outdoors on sunbeds or slumped on cafe tables.

Authorities on Kos said the two dead tourists were from Sweden and Turkey. Thirteen others injured were airlifter to other Greek hospitals, include a foreign national who had to have a leg amputated and another with life-threatening head injuries.

In neighboring Turkey, authorities said some 350 people were hurt, most with light injuries as they fled buildings.

Seismologists said the shallow depth of the quake was to blame for the damage and a 60 centimeter (2-foot) sea swell that scattered cars, boats, and trash bins across shorelines in the east Aegean Sea.

Hundreds of revelers were in or near the popular White Corner Club – housed in a renovated building dating to the 1930s – in the old town of Kos when the building partially collapsed.

Christopher Hackland, a Scottish diving instructor, described the chaotic scene at his hotel when the quake struck.

“There was banging. There was shaking. The light was swinging, banging on the ceiling, crockery falling out of the cupboards, and pans were making noise,” he told The Associated Press.

“There was a lot of screaming and crying and hysterics coming from the hotel. It felt like being at a theme park with one of the illusions, an optical illusion where you feel like you’re upside down.”

Turkey sent a vessel to Kos to bring some 200 Turkish tourists home, and named the dead tourist as Sinan Kurdoglu. The foreign ministry said a second national in serious condition was being evacuated to Athens for treatment.

The quake on Kos damaged churches, an old mosque, and the port’s 14th century castle, along with old buildings in the town – but the damage was relatively limited.

Kos Mayor Giorgos Kyritsis said strict building codes have been in force for decades following a deadly earthquake in 1933 that flattened the island’s main town.

“There are not many old buildings left on Kos. Nearly all the structures on the island have been built under the new codes to withstand earthquakes,” the mayor said.

Before dawn rescue teams with sniffer dogs searched the rubble in the town while dozens of villages were also checked – but found no more injured people.

The quake caused cracks on walls of some buildings in the Turkish resort of Bodrum, flooded the lower floors of sea-front hotels and restaurants and sent moored boats crashing toward the shore.

The Istanbul-based Kandilli earthquake research center said the small “tsunami” pushed sea water up 100 meters (yards) inland.

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Gatopoulos reported from Athens, Greece; Bilginsoy reported from Istanbul, Turkey. Ayse Wieting in Bitez, Turkey, Suzan Fraser in Ankara, Elena Becatoros in Saranda, Albania, and Ron DePasquale and Stephanie Siek in New York contributed.

A partially destroyed building is seen after an earthquake on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake sent a building crashing down on tourists at a bar on the Greek holiday island of Kos and struck panic on the nearby shores of Turkey early Friday, killing two people and injuring some 200 people. (AP Photo/Nikiforos Pittaras)
Cracks are seen on the facade of a church after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said two tourists killed in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
A crack sits in the facade of a church after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said two tourists killed in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
The broken quay wall is raised by several inches in the harbor after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said two tourists killed in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Debris of the collapsed minaret sits around a mosque after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said the two tourists who were killed in that house in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Debris of the collapsed minaret sits around a mosque after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said the two tourists who were killed in that house in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Debris of the collapsed minaret of a mosque sit next to a sun shade after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said the two tourists who were killed in that house in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Rubble sits on the street in front of a collapsed house after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said the two tourists who were killed in that house in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Rubble sits on the street in front of a collapsed house after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said the two tourists who were killed in that house in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
A man gestures in front of the toppled minaret of a mosque after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said two tourists killed in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
A toppled column is seen in the harbor after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said two tourists killed in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
A huge crack is seen in the harbor after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said two tourists killed in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Debris sits on the damaged mosque after an earthquake in Kos on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. Greek authorities said two tourists killed in the overnight quake are from Turkey and Sweden.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)
A cafe setting is littered with rubble following a strong earthquake on the Greek island of Kos early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Turkey’s Aegean coast and nearby Greek islands, sending frightened residents running out of buildings they feared would collapse and into the streets. (Sander van Deventer via AP)
Damage and flooding are seen on a coastal road following a strong earthquake on the Greek island of Kos early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Turkey’s Aegean coast and nearby Greek islands, sending frightened residents running out of buildings they feared would collapse and into the streets. (Sander van Deventer via AP)
Residents sleep in a public square following a strong earthquake on the Greek island of Kos early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake shook the Greek resort island of Kos overnight, damaging older buildings and the main port, killing at least two people and causing more than 120 injuries. (Kalymnos-news.gr via AP)
A man lies on the ground as other tourists stand outside a bar after an earthquake on the Greek island of Kos early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Greek islands and Turkey’s Aegean coast early Friday morning, damaging buildings and a port and killing at least two people, authorities said. (Kostoday.gr via AP)
Damage and flooding are seen on a coastal road following a strong earthquake on the Greek island of Kos early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Turkey’s Aegean coast and nearby Greek islands, sending frightened residents running out of buildings they feared would collapse and into the streets. (Sander van Deventer via AP)
Hotel guests sleep outdoors after abandoning their rooms following an earthquake in Bitez, a resort town about 6 kilometers (4 miles) west of Bodrum, Turkey, early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Turkey’s Aegean coast and nearby Greek islands, sending frightened residents running out of buildings they feared would collapse and into the streets. (AP Photo/Ayse Wieting)
A man walks near a damaged building after an earthquake on the Greek island of Kos early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Greek islands and Turkey’s Aegean coast early Friday morning, damaging buildings and a port and killing people, authorities said. (Kalymnos-news.gr via AP)
People sit at a square after an earthquake on the Greek island of Kos early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Greek islands and Turkey’s Aegean coast early Friday morning, damaging buildings and a port and killing at least two people, authorities said. (Kostoday.gr via AP)
Damage and flooding are seen on a coastal road following a strong earthquake on the Greek island of Kos early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Turkey’s Aegean coast and nearby Greek islands, sending frightened residents running out of buildings they feared would collapse and into the streets. (Kalymnos-news.gr via AP)
People look at a damaged building after an earthquake on the Greek island of Kos early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Turkey’s Aegean coast and nearby Greek islands, sending frightened residents running out of buildings they feared would collapse and into the streets. (Kalymnos-news.gr via AP)
A damaged building is seen after an earthquake on the Greek island of Kos early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Turkey’s Aegean coast and nearby Greek islands, sending frightened residents running out of buildings they feared would collapse and into the streets. (Kalymnos-news.gr via AP)
Hotel guests sleep outdoors after abandoning their rooms following an earthquake in Bitez, a resort town about 6 kilometers (4 miles) west of Bodrum, Turkey, early Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Turkey’s Aegean coast and nearby Greek islands, sending frightened residents running out of buildings they feared would collapse and into the streets. (AP Photo/Ayse Wieting)
Hotel residents sleep outdoors after abandoning their rooms following an earthquake in Bitez, a resort town about 6 kilometers (4 miles) west of Bodrum, Turkey, early Friday, July 21, 2017 A powerful earthquake struck Turkey’s Aegean coast and nearby Greek islands, sending frightened residents running out of buildings they feared would collapse and into the streets. (AP Photo/Ayse Wieting)
A man sleeps on the beachfront after spending the night outdoors following an earthquake in Bitez, a resort town about 6 kilometers (4 miles) west of Bodrum, Turkey, Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake struck Turkey’s Aegean coast and nearby Greek islands, sending frightened residents running out of buildings they feared would collapse and into the streets. (AP Photo/Ayse Wieting)
People gather around a partially destroyed mosque after an earthquake on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake sent a building crashing down on tourists at a bar on the Greek holiday island of Kos and struck panic on the nearby shores of Turkey early Friday, killing two people and injuring some 200 people. (AP Photo/Nikiforos Pittaras)
Damage is seen at a Greek Orthodox church after an earthquake on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake sent a building crashing down on tourists at a bar on the Greek holiday island of Kos and struck panic on the nearby shores of Turkey early Friday, killing two people and injuring some 200 people. (AP Photo/Nikiforos Pittaras)
A general view of the port after an earthquake on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake sent a building crashing down on tourists at a bar on the Greek holiday island of Kos and struck panic on the nearby shores of Turkey early Friday, killing two people and injuring some 200 people. (AP Photo/Nikiforos Pittaras)
A partially destroyed building is seen after an earthquake on the island of Kos, Greece Friday, July 21, 2017. A powerful earthquake sent a building crashing down on tourists at a bar on the Greek holiday island of Kos and struck panic on the nearby shores of Turkey early Friday, killing two people and injuring some 200 people. (AP Photo/Nikiforos Pittaras)
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