August 13, 1953

MAJOR EARTHQUAKE IN IONIAN ISLANDS: The tragedy that struck Ithaca on Sunday (August 9) was repeated yesterday (August 11) on other Ionian islands, of which Cephalonia was the worst affected. According to reports from Patras last night, about 150 people are estimated to have been killed in the worst-hit areas, a number that is expected to rise to 400. The latest destructive quake came at 5.30 a.m. yesterday, causing further damage to that already wreaked on the islands of Ithaca and Cephalonia, and also affecting Zakynthos, the northwestern Peloponnese and western mainland. The islanders, who had returned to their homes during the night encouraged by an easing of the tremors, raced out into the street half-dressed, seeking refuge from the destructive forces of nature. FRESH QUAKE IN IONIAN: Another strong quake was recorded at 11.20 p.m. yesterday (Wednesday, August 12), claiming more victims and wreaking further destruction of inconceivable proportions. Mt Ainos on Cephalonia was split in two and flames are engulfing the town of Zakynthos. Argostoli, Sami and Vathi and a number of villages have been razed by the quake. The number of dead and injured is impossible to estimate even by approximation. Argostoli is sinking as a result of subsidence. The king left today for the affected areas; the government will rebuild the ruined towns and villages as soon as possible. The entire Greek fleet has been ordered to sail for the Ionian Sea.