ASSISI, Italy — Central Italy quivered and shook again on Friday, as earthquakes injured 20 people and inflicted more damage on the Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi and other buildings hit by temblors a week ago.
The earthquakes sparked panic in people still alarmed by the earlier shocks. Many residents once again fled homes and offices for the safety of open areas.
"What is this mystery of the earth moving? Can't it stay still?" asked the Rev. Pasquale Magro, head of the the basilica's museum.
The epicenter of Friday's most powerful quake, which measured a magnitude 4.8, was near Serravalle de Chienti, 30 miles east of Assisi. It sent workers at the region's disaster relief center running out their doors when the brief rumbling began at 10:55 a.m.
The quakes that hit Sept. 26 had turned Serravalle into a virtual ghost town. Its several thousand residents, along with up to 42,000 others in the regions of Umbria and Marche, have been sleeping outside in tents, campers and cars.
About 20 people suffered minor injuries from falling debris in Friday's quake and the series of aftershocks that followed. A temblor with a magnitude of 3.5 struck at 1:04 p.m. and another almost as strong about 40 minutes later.
Magro said the new rumblings further damaged the St. Francis basilica.
Part of the cathedral's vaulted ceiling collapsed last week during the second and the strongest quake, at magnitude 5.7. Four people were killed, and three of the cathedral's treasured frescoes were destroyed.