March 22, 2020 – A Croatia earthquake March 2020 Zagreb update with the latest information, photos and videos.
As previously reported on TCN, the city of Zagreb was rocked by a series of earthquakes this morning, three in all, which has caused considerable damage in the Croatian capital at a time when its citizens were already dealing with the coronavirus emergency. Follow the live updates by Index.hr transmitted below:
12:00: You can find the latest on the Coronavirus crisis in Croatia and the Zagreb earthquake with our press conference update.
11:52: The Office of Emergency Management has organized meals for all citizens who cannot return to their homes.
Meals will be available after 1 pm at the following locations:
– Mazuranic Square
– Dr. Franjo Tudjman Square
Teams of construction experts are evaluating the damage to buildings by priority, and after inspections will mark buildings visibly. Please note that construction professionals are working specifically to assess post-earthquake damage.
“Please, strictly obey the markings and do not risk entering the building!”
11:35: Zagreb Mayor Milan Bandic urged residents who live in buildings with reinforced concrete structures to return to their homes after the earthquakes this morning. They will decide how to care for those whose buildings are unsafe.
“Eighty percent of Zagreb residents live in structures that have reinforced concrete structures, and I ask them to return to their homes. There would have to be a double earthquake to demolish these buildings. That has never happened in history,” Bandic said.
11:23: The Parliament building has been heavily damaged. No one can go inside without the permission of the relevant services.
11:04: City of Zagreb firefighters recorded 35 interventions involving 161 firefighters. These were fires that were successfully extinguished, and firefighters continue to participate in technical interventions that include rescuing people who are trapped in collapsed buildings and elevators, and removing chimneys and other objects that endanger citizens’ lives. There are 57 volunteer fire companies in the City of Zagreb on alert, and the commander-in-chief of the fire department issued an order for firefighters from the Zagreb County Fire Department to be on standby.
10:58: “We met with seismologists to see the situation and to determine the course of action. I appeal for citizens to be calm and keep composure. Twice a day you will receive information from the National Headquarters,” said Minister Radman.
He condemned the spread of panic and inaccuracy about new major earthquakes. “Listen to the instructions!”
10:55: Franjo Tudjman Airport reported:
“We would like to inform you that, in these unexpected circumstances, all of Franjo Tudjman’s airport duty staff responded in accordance with procedures, taking into account that safety and security of passengers were a priority and evacuated passengers from the passenger terminal at the time of the earthquake. It has been determined that there is no damage to the building itself or to the runway and other maneuvering areas. After operating systems are set up, we expect to have traffic established after 10:30 am, as scheduled,” they said.
10:35: An aftershock felt at 10:13 was magnitude 3.3. It was felt most strongly in the eastern part of the city.
10:25: A strong earthquake hit twice on Sunday in the Krapina-Zagorje County area, with the largest property damage reported in the municipalities of Gornja Stubica and Donja Stubica, said Mayor Zeljko Kolar.
“According to the information provided by the Mayor of Donja Stubica, we have two houses that have suffered and the families will have to move. There are four in Gornja Stubica for now,” Kolar said.
10:23: The European Commission said on Sunday it is monitoring the situation in Croatia after the Zagreb earthquake and is ready to help.
“We are closely monitoring the situation on the ground in Croatia after the earthquake in Zagreb.
“Our Emergency Response Coordination Center is in contact with the Croatian authorities. We are ready to help,” said Crisis Commissioner Janez Lenarcic.
10:05: The army took to the streets.
“They are all in operation. I gave the order to bring in the Croatian Armed Forces, we are available to assist the city of Zagreb. Our task is, as part of the homeland security, to help our citizens when it is most difficult,” said the Ministry of Defense.
10:01: “The most important thing at this point is to listen to the Government and the Headquarters. Listen to the news of those in charge. They exist because of situations like this, you can ignore everything else,” President Zoran Milanovic said.
“The quake was 5.5 magnitude, the strongest in the last 140 years,” said Prime Minister Plenkovic.
“There is a lot of damage. We urge citizens to exercise caution. We recommend that you stay in front of the buildings for the time being,” Plenkovic said. You can read the full press conference here.
10:00: A 15-year-old child is still in critical condition.
Goran Roic, the director of the Clinic for Children’s Diseases, said on Sunday that the 15-year-old is in very critical condition and is undergoing additional diagnostics.
“The child is very, very critical, but we are doing everything we can,” Roic told N1.
09:53: The Zagreb Office for Emergency Situations has urged citizens not to enter damaged buildings following three earthquakes in the capital on Sunday morning.
“After the earthquakes in Zagreb this morning, we are informing citizens not to enter the damaged buildings. Teams of construction experts are coming to the scene, who will prioritize damage assessment of buildings and mark buildings according to the assessment. The priority is hospitals and later all other buildings.
In addition, teams of construction workers have been hired to clean roads and corridors,” they reported.
“There is also a Special Search and Rescue Civil Protection Unit on the ground, and it is starting to work. All general-purpose Civil Protection units are invited to report to their assembly sites and take on tasks.
NO Krško is not damaged and the electricity supply is normalized and the failures are not large. Unfortunately, we cannot know when and what the subsequent earthquakes will be, but according to seismologists, they should not be stronger than the first earthquake.
We ask all citizens to remain calm and follow the notices of official sources. We ask all citizens to respect the coronavirus-related social distance recommendations in this situation as well,” they said.
09:39: There was another earthquake, this time of 3.0 magnitude.
09:38: Contrary to initial reports that a 15-year-old child was the first victim of an earthquake in Zagreb, the child has apparently been resuscitated and is fighting for life
Index had initially reported breaking news that the 15-year-old boy died due to the earthquakes. Hina had confirmed that the child died at the Zagreb Institute of Emergency Medicine, having been transported there by ambulance following the collapse of the building at Djordjiceva 13.
There were three initial earthquakes, all a few kilometres north of Zagreb. The first had a magnitude of 5.3 at 06:24, the second 5.0 at 07:01, and a third at 07:41, measuring 3.7. There were two further quakes, both 3.0, 6km north of Zagreb at 09:04 and 09:10. Follow this official global earthquake monitoring website for the latest.
Perhaps the biggest symbol of the physical devastation is Zagreb Cathedral, which has lost part of one of its iconic towers.
The Zagreb earthquake today comes at a critical time for Croatia, as it battles to stop the COVID-19 catastrophe currently happening in Italy. The Croatian authorities have imposed strict new rules, and Zagreb residents were advised to stay indoors and off the streets, public transport was largely cut, and efforts were being stepped up to enforce the required social distancing.
And then, this. One of the most most worrying aspects of these earthquakes is the fallout from the hospital at Rebro, which was also damaged.
What to do? Where to run? One of the scenes of confusion and fear in the immediate aftermath. Heartbreaking.
We will follow the developments of the earthquake live here on this article.
Our thoughts are with you, Zagreb.