Rome: An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude estimated at 6.1 has rattled Rome and central Italy in the middle of Tuesday night.
There were no immediate reports of damage, but state-run RAI radio early Wednesday said that people ran into the streets in central Umbria and Le Marche regions shortly after the earthquake struck just after 3.30 am.
The European Mediterranean Seismological Center put the magnitude at 6.1 and said the epicenter was northeast of Rome, near Rieti. The US Geological Survey (USGS) put the magnitude at 6.2. It was felt in central Rome, as people in homes in the city's historic center felt a long swaying.
USGS's PAGER system, which predicts the impact of earthquakes, has issued a red alert — suggesting significant casualties and damage based on previous earthquake data. A 2009, 6.3-magnitude earthquake in the Aquila region, which was also felt in the Italian capital, left more than 300 dead.
With inputs from agencies