Mexico earthquake: powerful tremor hits on anniversary of major 1985 quake

Buildings in Mexico City swayed sickeningly as the 7.4 magnitude earthquake hit, causing people to flee office buildings along the central Reforma Avenue

People in Mexico City as the earthquake hit Tuesday. The extent of damage was not immediately clear. Photograph: Ronaldo Schemidt/AFP/Getty Images

A powerful earthquake has hit southern Mexico, causing serious damage to buildings in the country’s capital on the anniversary of a 1985 quake that inflicted major damage to Mexico City.

An earthquake of 7.4 magnitude hit southern Mexico on Tuesday, the US Geological Survey said.

The quake hit five miles (eight km) southeast of Atencingo in the state of Puebla at a depth of 32 miles (51 km), USGS said.

Several buildings in Mexico City were severely damaged, and at least one partially collapsed, while swathes of the capital were left without electricity. The quake came with such a jolt it knocked loose articles off tables and caused pictures to fall from walls.

Along Insurgentes Avenue – one of the city’s main thoroughfares – thousands of people streamed out of buildings in panic as alarms blared, and traffic stopped around the Angel of Independence monument.

Traffic came to a standstill, as masses of workers blocked streets. Clouds of dust rose from fallen pieces of facades.



The quake shook the capital on the anniversary of the devastating 1985 earthquake which cost thousands of lives and destroyed many buildings in the capital.

Just two hours and 15 minutes before Tuesday’s quake, buildings across the city held practice evacuations drills on the anniversary of the 1985 quake.

Improved safety laws and better disaster preparation means that earthquakes since 1985 have caused less damage in the capital. But Tuesday’s quake strike without warning, despite an alert mechanism which normally sounds an alert beforehand.

And damage can be devastating in the poorer rural areas in the south of the country. Earlier this month a magnitude 8.2 earthquake killed at least 98 people and left an estimated 2.5 million people in need of assistance

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Source By theguardian.com

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