11 Deaths Reported in Chile Quake

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With an epicenter in Iquique, in northern Chile, a 7.9 magnitude earthquake rocked city streets and highways Monday night, creating a death toll now at eleven people.

11 Deaths Reported in Chile Quake

Earthquakes have no regard for age or status as the one-minute catastrophe knocked over adobe and more prominent house alike, and causing landslides to smother the life from those as young 9 months.

Iquique, about 1000 miles from Santiago, is a mining district in northern Chile where water mains burst and power was lost. Nearby port cities Arica and Antofagasta suffered similar fates from the quake that was felt as far away as Bolivia, and southern Peru. Damage is described as minor in the neighboring countries.

Residents of Iquique, which is home to 140,000 people, are left without food, water, or power as they await emergency aid from Chile’s Emergency Bureau ONEMI.

Mercedez Cruz, from nearby Huavilla, recounted her story to local radio:

“The church fell down, 15 houses are destroyed and 20 are uninhabitable.
We’ve been out in the town square all night because it quaked all night.

ONEMI said most of the 11 deaths so far were landslide related.

The quake struck at 6:44 PM, Chilean time on Monday, and shook for close to a minute at 7.9 on the Richter scale of magnitude.

President Ricardo Lagos returned home from Europe early than expected to tour the quake-wracked area and to assess the damages.

The government has already sent food and medicine to the scene to help the stricken. 200 people have been reported injured in quake related incidents.

Interior Minister Jorge Correa said that power and communications were interrupted in many areas, especially in remote mountain villages.

Officially, the epicenter was located at 19.9 degrees south latitude and 69.2 degrees west longitude, about 110 kilometers northeast of Tarapaca’s capital, Iquique, and lasted 50 seconds.

11 Deaths Reported in Chile Quake
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