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Servicemembers and civilians in Afghanistan got a rude awakening Monday morning when a magnitude 5.4 earthquake shook the region around the country’s capital city. The temblor was felt by soldiers and airmen from Bagram Air Base to Kabul, military officials said.

No significant damage was reported to base or civilian infrastructure by Tuesday afternoon, officials said.

“At first I thought something was wrong with my chair or there was a heavy truck going by. I’ve grown accustomed to the ground shaking when there are controlled demolition explosions here, so I did not think much about it. An earthquake was the furthest thing from my mind,” Air Force Tech. Sgt. Johnathan Raford, of the 455th Expeditionary Mission Support Group, was quoted in a military news release about the quake.

Air Force weather teams, who tracked the quake, reported its epicenter was in the Hindu Kush mountains approximately 150 miles northeast of Bagram.

Earthquakes have long been a danger in mountainous Afghanistan. A magnitude 6.6 quake struck in April 2004, killing hundreds and tumbling dozens of mud and brick homes in the Hindu Kush region. A more powerful quake in 1998 killed an estimated 5,000.


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