A fruit seller's prediction that Lisbon will be hit by a major earthquake Sunday created so much anxiety that officials issued a statement assuring residents there was no need to worry.

Vivina da Conceicao, who makes her living selling fruit and claims to be a clairvoyant, made banner headlines in local newspapers with her ominous prediction."We've been inundated with about 100 calls a day this week," said Luisa Senos, at Lisbon's National Institute for Meteorology and Geophysics.

"I've been explaining to these poor people that there's absolutely no cause for alarm, there's no scientific basis" for the prediction, she said.

The Civil Protection Service, responsible for salvage work in disasters, issued a statement saying it is impossible "to predict earth tremors, especially down to the last detail like day and exact time."