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  HOME | Mexico

Strong Earthquake Rocks Southern Mexico, Forces Evacuations in Capital

MEXICO CITY Ė A magnitude-6.6 earthquake rocked the southern Mexican state of Chiapas on Friday and forced several buildings in Mexico City to be evacuated.

The temblor, whose epicenter was located at a spot 40 kilometers (25 miles) southwest of Ciudad Hidalgo, Chiapas, near the Mexico-Guatemala border, struck at 10:14 am, the National Seismological Service said.

The US National Geological Survey said the quake had a preliminary magnitude of 6.5.

The earthquake forced the evacuation of the municipal government building of Mexico City, where Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum was presenting a security plan for the capitalís Metro system.

Upon returning to the presentation, the municipal public safety secretary, Jesus Orta, reported that for now no damage or injuries seem to have been inflicted by the temblor, which caused no seismic alert to be activated.

The quake was also felt in the states of Oaxaca, Guerrero, Tabasco, Puebla and Veracruz, as well as in Chiapas, where Gov. Rutilio Escandon said on Twitter that all the standard security measures had been activated but no damage was reported. Nor have other states reported any victims or damages.

In 2017, 471 people were killed by earthquakes that rocked Mexico on Sept. 7, Sept. 19 and Sept. 23, marking the worst natural disaster in the country in more than 30 years.

The Sept. 19 temblor occurred on the 32nd anniversary of the magnitude-8.1 earthquake that hit Mexico City, killing some 10,000 people, injuring more than 40,000 others and leaving 80,000 people homeless.

In 2015, Mexico Cityís government installed a warning system, which uses 8,200 loudspeakers located across the capitalís 16 boroughs, to alert residents to an earthquake.

The Seismic Warning System gives Mexico City residents a 50-second alert to prevent a repetition of the tragedy that occurred in 1985.

The warning is generated by sensors along the Pacific coast, located about 400 kilometers (some 250 miles) from the capital, giving residents time to get out of buildings that could collapse in a temblor.

Fridayís quake did not trigger the warning system, the city government said.

 

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