North America

Strong earthquake rocks Mexico

Published : September 08, 2021 18:11 IST

Buildings shook in Mexico City, sending people into the street after a 'notable' earthquake struck the country's southwestern region. Photo: Edgard Garrido/REUTERS

The United States Geological Survey reported the quake was of a magnitude 7.0.

A powerful earthquake that struck southern Mexico on the night of September 7 claimed at least one victim and was felt in Mexico City nearly 322 kilometers (200 miles) away. The U.S. Geological Survey reported the earthquake had a preliminary magnitude of 7.0 and was centered around 17 kilometers inland from the popular tourist destination Acapulco.

What do we know so far?

The earthquake's first recorded casualty was a man from Coyuca de Benitez who died when an electric pole fell on top of him, Guerrero governor Hector Astudillo told Milenio television. Having issued a warning in the immediate aftermath of the quake, the U.S. Tsunami warning system said there was "no tsunami warning, watch, or threat after quake in Guerrero."

Acapulco Mayor Adela Roman said in statement to broadcaster Milenio that "there is no really serious situation."

"There are nervous breakdowns, people are worried because there have been aftershocks," she said, adding that there are "many gas leaks in many places'' as well as some landslides and fallen walls.

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said while the quake had sent rocks tumbling down hillsides and damaged walls, it had not caused severe damage in the state of Guerrero, where Acapulco is situated, or the neighboring region of Oaxaca, or Mexico City. "Fortunately there hasn't been serious damage," he said.

'Lack of electricity' in Mexico City

In Mexico City, the ground shook for nearly a minute, causing a number of people to immediately evacuate their buildings, fearing the worst. However, there were no early reports of damage in the capital, though Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum told the "Canal 40" television station that electricity was knocked out in some neighborhoods. She also retweeted a post from a senior official which said there was "a lack of electricity" in some parts of the city due to the earthquake.

Volatile seismic region

All of the west coast of the American sub-continent is part of the Pacific Ring of Fire, notorious for its seismic activity. Earthquakes are common in Mexico, with a 7.1 magnitude quake in September 2017 killing 369 people, 228 in the capital.

One of the most deadly quakes to hit Mexico City had a magnitude of 8.0 and claimed at least 10,000 lives in 1985.

jsi/rs (AP, Reuters)