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Tremors Shake Belizeans Out of Their Beds – Strong Quake Hits Nearby Mexico

Mexico’s 8.1 Earthquake Was Strong Enough to Significantly Shake Things up in Belize – At least 20 people have been killed after a magnitude-8.1 earthquake struck Mexico, causing a tsunami and warnings for countries across Central America. Belizeans were very startled at the very evident shaking taking place as usually only slight tremors have been felt during earthquakes in the region.

There were no reports of damages in Belize, except for strong shaking followed by some swaying. Belizean’s reported feeling the tremors throughout the country, even on the Barrier Islands off the coast. There have been reports of structure damage in Guatemala.

The Governor of the Mexican state of Chiapas announced the first fatalities following the most powerful quake to hit the country since 1985 and killed thousands, striking 119km south-southwest of Tres Picos. The official death toll was later raised to 20.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said a tsunami had been triggered by the quake, with warnings issued for people in Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, Honduras and Ecuador, but there were no significant reports of the phenomenon taking place.

Huge earthquake hits southern Mexico

The earthquake struck shortly after midnight off the coast of Mexico, leaving some buildings severely damaged in the south of the country. The US Geological Survey estimates the earthquake, occurred at a depth of 43 miles. Manuel Velasco, the governor of Chiapas state, said the quake had destroyed homes and buildings and left some hospitals without power.

Authorities in the state of Chiapas are assessing the damage. The UK Telegraph has a good update on damage reports:

The Associated Press reports:

    ” ‘The house moved like chewing gum and the light and internet went out momentarily,’ ” said Rodrigo Soberanes, who lives near San Cristobal de las Casas in Chiapas, a poor, largely indigenous state popular with tourists.

    “Chiapas Gov. Manuel Velasco said that three people were killed in San Cristobal, including two women who died in San Cristobal 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.”

    “Civil Defense in Chiapas said on its Twitter account that its personnel were in the streets aiding people and warned residents to prepare for aftershocks.

    “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.”

Tabasco Gov. Arturo Nunez told media outlets that two children had died in his state. In Oaxaca, a hotel collapsed but no one was reported dead.

The earthquake was so strong that buildings in Mexico City, which is more than 600 miles away from where the quake hit, swayed violently.

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