Enceladus' Breath

Under the blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea, a terrible giant is buried. His name is Enceladus, he has a long hair and a long beard, fiery eyes and a rebellious spirit. It is told that he was at the head of the Titans who dared to declare war to the gods and that he was defeated by Athena, goddess of wisdom and justice, who made him plunge into the sea. He was finally buried where now Sicily is and his head lies under the Etna. According to legend, the volcano spits out fire when the giant cries of pain and an earthquake shakes the Mediterranean coasts when Enceladus rolls because of his wounds.
Even though Athena watches over the islands to keep the giant asleep, in Greece Enceladus’s strokes are frequently and sometimes strongly felt. Although the entire country is prone to be hit by earthquakes, destructive seismic activity occurs more frequently along the coasts of Western Greece up to Western Crete because of the titanic clash between the African and the Eurasian plates.
Living on a Greek island means coming to terms with tremors and be prepared their potential consequences.
In 1953 Kefalonia, Zakynthos and Ithaca were hit by disastrous earthquakes which caused hundreds of victims and razed to the ground beautiful historical buildings and almost every house. As a consequence, a huge number of residents had to leave their homeland and emigrated for better lives elsewhere. Ghost towns and abandoned ruins like Palia Vlachata in Kefalonia still open a window on the fascinating past of the Ionian islands before the earthquake changed them forever.    
Nowadays it is evident that paying due attention to anti-seismic regulations is absolutely necessary to protect human lives and investment properties. Seismic engineers point out that anti-seismic building regulations in Greece have incessantly improved since they were first instituted in 1985 and have culminated in the current norms, which brilliantly combine international research and local experience. They also underline that, though not all constructions are covered by the rulings because they were built before their coming into force, this does not mean they are inevitably dangerous. They are more vulnerable, but could be aligned to modern norms and safety standards without excessive costs.
Consulting an engineer is the easiest and safest way to identify structural problems and find the more suitable solutions. SUNIONIAN professionals are prepared to support you in the best way possible, making sure that the house you are about to buy or build fulfils all the necessary requirements and has all the permits which are required, thus avoiding future high penalties.
Awareness, prevention and safety can save lives and investments. If we can’t prevent Enceladus to take occasional deep breaths, we can at least help Athena in her major task to protect and maintain the beautiful Mediterranean coasts. Contact us for further information and an inspection to your property!
Find out more about Greece antiseismic regulation and E.P.P.O. (Earthquake Planning and Protection Organization) activities here
If you are interested in learning more about earthquakes in the Mediterranean area, here are some useful links provided by the G.I., Institute of Geodynamics – National Observatory of Athens: