Earthquake in Mexico on September 08 2017 07:50 AM (UTC).
The death toll from the massive earthquake that rocked southern Mexico has risen to at least 90, with most of the fatalities occurring in Oaxaca State. The powerful 8.2-magnitude quake struck off Mexico's far southern Pacific coast just before midnight Thursday, about 100 kilometers from the town of Tonala. The earthquake triggered a 1-meter-high tsunami, according to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center, but there were no reports of tsunami damage. The quake was felt as far away as Mexico City and Guatemala City. Residents of the Mexican capital fled into the streets, many in their pajamas, for fear buildings would collapse. Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has said the earthquake was bigger than a 1985 earthquake in the country that killed thousands. In a televised address Friday evening, he declared three days of national mourning and promised that the government will help rebuild. "The power of this earthquake was devastating," Pena Nieto said, but added that Mexico's response "will be greater."
One of the most powerful earthquakes ever recorded in Mexico struck off the country's southern coast, toppling hundreds of buildings and sending panicked people fleeing into the streets in the middle of the night. At least 61 people were reported dead. The quake that hit minutes before midnight Thursday was strong enough to cause buildings to sway violently in the capital city more than 650 miles (1,000 kilometers) away. As beds banged against walls, people still wearing pajamas ran out of their homes and gathered in frightened groups. Rodrigo Soberanes, who lives near San Cristobal de las Casas in Chiapas, the state nearest the epicenter, said his house "moved like chewing gum." The furious shaking created a second national emergency for Mexican agencies already bracing for Hurricane Katia on the other side of the country. The system was expected to strike the Gulf coast in the state of Veracruz late Friday or early Saturday as a Category 2 storm that could bring life-threatening floods. President Enrique Pena Nieto said Friday evening in a televised address that 61 people were killed - 45 in Oaxaca state, 12 in Chiapas and 4 in Tabasco - and he declared three days of national mourning. The worst-hit city was Juchitan, on the narrow waist of Oaxaca known as the Isthmus, where 36 quake victims died. About half of Juchitan's city hall collapsed in a pile of rubble and streets were littered with the debris of ruined houses. A hospital also collapsed, Pena Nieto said after touring the city and meeting with residents. The patients were relocated to other facilities. The president said authorities were working to re-establish the supply of water and food and provide medical attention to those who need it. He vowed the government would help people rebuild and called for people to come together. "The power of this earthquake was devastating, but we are certain that the power of unity, the power of solidarity and the power of shared responsibility will be greater," Pena Nieto said. Mexico City escaped major damage, but the quake terrified sleeping residents, many of whom still remember the catastrophic 1985 earthquake that killed thousands and devastated large parts of the city. Families were jerked awake by the grating howl of the capital's seismic alarm. Some shouted as they dashed out of rocking apartment buildings. Even the iconic Angel of Independence Monument swayed as the quake's waves rolled through the city's soft soil. Elsewhere, the extent of destruction was still emerging. Hundreds of buildings collapsed or were damaged, power was cut at least briefly to more than 1.8 million people and authorities closed schools Friday in at least 11 states to check them for safety. The Interior Department reported that 428 homes were destroyed and 1,700 were damaged in various cities and towns in Chiapas. "Homes made of clay tiles and wood collapsed," said Nataniel Hernandez, a human rights worker living in Tonala, Chiapas, who warned that inclement weather threatened to bring more down. "Right now it is raining very hard in Tonala, and with the rains it gets much more complicated because the homes were left very weak, with cracks," Hernandez said by phone. The earthquake's impact was blunted somewhat by the fact that it was centered 100 miles offshore. It hit off Chiapas' Pacific coast, near the Guatemalan border, with a magnitude of 8.1 - equal to Mexico's strongest quake of the past century. It was slightly stronger than the 1985 quake, the U.S. Geological Survey said. The epicenter was in a seismic hotspot in the Pacific where one tectonic plate dives under another. These subduction zones are responsible for producing some of the biggest quakes in history, including the 2011 Fukushima disaster and the 2004 Sumatra quake that spawned a deadly tsunami. The quake struck at 11:49 p.m. Thursday (12:49 a.m. EDT; 4:49 a.m. GMT Friday). Its epicenter was 102 miles (165 kilometers) west of Tapachula in Chiapas, with a depth of 43.3 miles (69.7 kilometers), the USGS said. Dozens of strong aftershocks rattled the region in the following hours. Three people were killed in San Cristobal, including two women who died when a house and a wall collapsed, Chiapas Gov. Manuel Velasco said. "There is damage to hospitals that have lost energy," he said. "Homes, schools and hospitals have been damaged." In Tabasco, one child died when a wall collapsed, and an infant died in a children's hospital when the facility lost electricity, cutting off the ventilator, Gov. Arturo Nunez said. The quake triggered tsunami warnings and some tall waves, but there was no major damage from the sea. Authorities briefly evacuated a few residents of coastal Tonala and Puerto Madero because of the warning. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center reported waves of 3.3 feet (1 meter) above the tide level off Salina Cruz, Mexico. Smaller tsunami waves were observed on the coast or measured by ocean gauges elsewhere.
One of the most powerful earthquakes ever to strike Mexico has hit off its southern Pacific coast, killing at least 32 people, toppling houses, government offices and businesses while sending panicked people into the streets more than 650 miles (1,000 kilometers) away. The U.S. Geological Survey said the earthquake hit off Chiapas state near the Guatemalan border with a magnitude of 8.1 - slightly stronger than the magnitude 8 quake of 1985 that killed thousands and devastated large parts of Mexico City. Oaxaca state Gov. Alejandro Murat told local news media that at least 23 people had died in his coastal state. Civil defense officials said at least seven died in Chiapas and two others in the Gulf coast state of Tabasco. Hundreds of buildings collapsed or were damage, power was cut at least briefly to more than 1.8 million people and authorities closed schools Friday in at least 11 states to check them for safety. "The house moved like chewing gum and the light and internet went out momentarily," said Rodrigo Soberanes, who lives near the Chiapas state city of San Cristobal de las Casas. The U.S. Geological Survey recorded at least 20 aftershocks of magnitude 4.0 or greater within about five hours after the main shake, and the president warned that a major aftershock as large as magnitude 7.2 could occur. The USGS said the quake struck at 11:49 p.m. Thursday (12:49 a.m. EDT ; 0449 GMT Friday) and its epicenter was 102 miles (165 kilometers) west of Tapachula in Chiapas. It had a depth of 43.3 miles (69.7 kilometers). The quake caused buildings to sway violently in Mexico's capital more than 650 miles (1,000 kilometers) away. As beds banged against walls, people still wearing pajamas fled into the streets, gathering in frightened groups. Chiapas Gov. Manuel Velasco said that three people were killed in San Cristobal, including two women who died when a house and a wall collapsed. He called on people living near the coast to leave their houses as a protective measure. "There is damage to hospitals that have lost energy," he said. "Homes, schools and hospitals have been damaged." Tabasco Gov. Arturo Nunez said one child died in his state when a wall collapsed, and the other was an infant who died in a children's hospital that lost electricity, cutting off its ventilator. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said waves of one meter (3.3 feet) above the tide level were measured off Salina Cruz, Mexico. Smaller tsunami waves were observed on the coast or measured by ocean gauges in several other places. The center's forecast said Ecuador, El Salvador and Guatemala could see waves of a meter or less. No threat was posed to Hawaii and the western and South Pacific. Mexican authorities said they were evacuating some residents of coastal Tonala and Puerto Madero because of the warning. The quake hit as Mexican emergency agencies were bracing for another crisis on the other side of the country. The U.S. National Hurricane Center said Hurricane Katia was likely to strike the Gulf coast in the state of Veracruz early Saturday as a Category 2 storm that could bring life-threatening floods. In neighboring Guatemala, President Jimmy Morales spoke on national television to call for calm while emergency crews checked for damage. "We have reports of some damage and the death of one person, even though we still don't have details," Morales said. He said the unconfirmed death occurred in San Marcos state near the border with Mexico. The quake occurred in a very seismically active region near the point of collision between three tectonic plates, the Cocos, the Caribbean and the North American. Mexico's National Seismological Service said the area has seen at least six other quakes of magnitude 7.0 or greater since 1900 - though three of those all occurred within a nerve-wracking nine-month span in 1902-1903. The new quake matched the force of a magnitude 8.1 quake that hit the country on June 3, 1932, roughly 300 miles (500 kilometers) west of Mexico City.
A powerful 8.2-magnitude earthquake rocked Mexico late Thursday, killing at least 15 people and triggering a tsunami alert in what the president called the quake-prone country's biggest one in a century.Officials evacuated residents along the central and southern Pacific coast as seismologists warned a tsunami of more than three meters (10 feet) could be headed toward land, affecting coastal towns as far south as Ecuador.The quake hit offshore in the Pacific at 11:49 pm (0449 GMT), about 100 kilometers (60 miles) from the coastal town of Tonala, in far southern Chiapas state, Mexico's seismologic service said, giving an updated magnitude of 8.2."It was a major earthquake in scale and magnitude, the strongest in the past 100 years," said President Enrique Pena Nieto in an address from the National Disaster Prevention Center's headquarters, where he was supervising the emergency response.The US Geological Survey put the magnitude slightly lower, at 8.1. That is the same as a devastating 1985 earthquake that killed more than 10,000 people in Mexico City -- the country's most destructive ever."The death toll is 15 in all... based on the figures from each state," the head of the disaster management agency, Ricardo de la Cruz, told TV station Milenio after the quake, the most powerful to hit Mexico in a century.Pena Nieto said three people were killed in collapsing buildings in Chiapas.In neighboring Tabasco state, two children were killed, the governor said. One was crushed by a collapsing wall. The other, an infant on a respirator, died after the quake triggered a power outage.A hotel collapsed and several houses were damaged in Juchitan, in the state of Oaxaca, but no fatalities were reported there.The president downplayed the tsunami threat, saying it was "not a major risk at this time."But coastal communities were on alert across a warning area that stretched through the Central American countries of Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama and Honduras, all the way down to Ecuador. "Based on all available data ... widespread hazardous tsunami waves are forecast for some coasts," the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said."Tsunami waves reaching more than three meters above the tide level are possible along the coasts of Mexico," it said, with lower waves in other countries.Tsunami waves of up to one meter could also reach New Zealand, according to seismologists in Australia.