Powerful Earthquake Hits South, Central Mexico


A massive 7.2 magnitude natural disaster hit the southern state of Oaxaca, Mexico, on Friday afternoon.

Many buildings in Mexico City are still damaged from that quake.

Panicked residents flooded into the street, fearing a repeat of two earthquakes last September that caused buildings to collapse and killed 465 people combined.

Pictures on social media showed minor damage to roads and some buildings, but there were no reports of injuries.

Standing in the middle of the street, her eyes glued to her fifth-floor apartment, Graciela Escalante, 72, could hardly speak.

The Mexico City Government wrote on Twitter, "Before returning to your homes, it is important to check if there are any damages, turn off gas lines and disconnect energy sources".

President Enrique Pena Nieto tweeted that the National Emergency Committee had been activated because of the magnitude of the quake.

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The epicentre was close to the Pacific coast in the southern state of Oaxaca near Mexico City and had a depth of 43km, according to the US Geological Survey. The Sept. 19 natural disaster struck closer to Mexico City. "It's all we can do", 38-year-old publicist Kevin Valladolid told AFP through tears after evacuating from his building in La Roma, in central Mexico City.

The Red Cross reported the facade from a building in the Condesa neighborhood, which was hit hard on September.

A 5.9-magnitude aftershock hit almost an hour later.

A powerful natural disaster has shaken south and central Mexico, causing people to flee buildings and office towers in the country's capital, and setting off quake alert systems.

Tremors from the quake were reportedly felt as far away as Guatemala.

A magnitude-5.8 aftershock struck the state of Oaxaca about an hour after the previous 7.2-magnitude quake.