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6.3 Peru Earthquake: Tremor Strikes Central Coastline

January 30, 2012


Map showing earthquakes

A powerful earthquake of 6.3-magnitide has struck the central coastline of Peru, according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).

Peruvian officials said at least 110 people have been injured by the quake; however, it is too early to assess the overall damage wrought by the natural disaster.

“The majority [of wounded] are suffering trauma and cuts,” Fernando Leon Castaneda, manager of a local hospital, told Radio Programas del Peru (RPP).

The tremor hit right after midnight, with its epicenter about 9 miles southeast of the city of Ica. Reportedly, it was felt across the southern and central parts of the mountainous Andes nation.

Ica is about 168 miles south of the capital city of Lima.

Ica itself has suffered damage to some buildings, as well as the loss of electrical power.

“We felt a terrible earthquake that’s really scared us,” Ica resident Blanca Cabanilla told the local radio. “It was similar to what happened to us in 2007.”

Five years ago, the region around Ica was struck by a deadlier quake — a 7.9-magnitude tremor left thousands of local people homeless and killed more than 500 people.

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Reuters reported that there was no damage at any of the country’s key mining operations (which are generally situated far from the quake zones).

The deadliest quake to strike Peru in recent memory was the catastrophic Ancash earthquake of May 1970 which killed as many as 80,000 people.

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