Mexico President: Quake Was Biggest in a Century

At least 5 killed in 8.2 quake, he says
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Sep 8, 2017 4:55 AM CDT
Updated Sep 8, 2017 6:32 AM CDT
Mexico: Quake Was Biggest in a Century
Debris from a collapsed wall sits in Oaxaca, Mexico, after an earthquake early Friday, Sept. 8, 2017.   (AP Photo/Luis Alberto Cruz)

Mexico's president says that the magnitude of the earthquake that hit the country just before midnight Thursday is 8.2, the biggest the country has seen in a century. Enrique Pena Nieto confirmed that at least five people have died in the temblor. He also said that major damage has been caused and that 1 million initially had been without power following the quake, but that electricity had been restored to 800,000 of them. He said that there have been 62 aftershocks and it's possible one as strong as 7.2 could hit within 24 hours, the AP reports.

The US Geological Survey has reported that the quake had a magnitude of 8.1. It hit off the coast of southern Mexico, toppling houses in Chiapas state, causing buildings to sway violently as far away as the country's distant capital, and setting off a tsunami warning. NBC News reports that while the president noted the quake was much more powerful than the 1985 one that killed upwards of 5,000 people in Mexico City, the fact that this quake's epicenter was 40 miles off the coast appears to have resulted in "far more limited ... damage." The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center says waves of 3.3 feet above the tide level were measured off Salina Cruz. The center's forecast said Ecuador, El Salvador, and Guatemala could see waves of that height or less. (More earthquake stories.)

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