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Iran Quake Injures 16 - Wrecks Villages January 7, 2011
Quake Map of Iran
A 5.4 magnitude quake injured 16 people Wednesday morning as it caused extensive destruction to about 10 of the 17 villages in southern Iran that reported at least some damage from the shaking.

The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake struck at 9:25 a.m. local time in Fars province, about 60 miles northwest of the provincial capital of Shiraz.

The relatively shallow depth of only about 6 miles was responsible for the extent of the damage, according to seismologists.

Just over two weeks earlier, a somewhat stronger quake in southeast Iran killed at least 11 people and caused damage in more than 40 villages of Kerman province.

Iran is situated on several major faults and is prone to frequent earthquakes.

A 6.3 magnitude quake in December 2003 killed about 31,000 people in the southern city of Bam.