Three earthquakes hit central Italy in the space of an hour

Three earthquakes hit central Italy in the space of an hour Wednesday, shaking the same region that suffered a series of deadly quakes last year.

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There were no immediate reports of casualties but tremors were felt as far away as Rome, where the subway was closed as a precaution and parents were asked to pick up their children from schools.

The first tremor, with a preliminary magnitude of 5.3, hit the region north of Amatrice at about 10:25 a.m. (0925 GMT), according to the U.S. Geological Survey. A second quake with a magnitude of 5.7 hit the same area about 50 minutes later, and 10 minutes later a third was measured at magnitude 5.3.

The mountainous Amatrice region was shaken by three quakes last year, killing nearly 300 people and causing significant damage to older buildings.

The region is about 100 kilometers (62 miles) northeast of Rome.

Antonio Tajani, an Italian politician who is president of the European Parliament, said tremors were “felt as far as Rome (but it) appears there are no victims.”

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A 5.3 magnitude earthquake has struck central Italy, with tremors reportedly felt across the regions of Abruzzo, Marche and Lazio, including the city of Rome.

Rome metro reportedly evacuated as earthquake hits central Italy.

The quake hit at around 10:25am local time on Wednesday and was recorded 104km (69 miles) northeast of Rome, according to the US Geological Survey. The European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre reports the depth of the quake at 10km.

The epicenter is understood to be just 7km from the town of Amatrice, the scene of a devastating 6.1 magnitude earthquake in August 2016, which claimed 297 lives.

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