6.3-magnitude quake strikes Chile

A 6.3-magnitude earthquake struck Chile's central region Tuesday evening, shaking buildings as far away as the capital of Santiago. But no damage or injuries were been reported and authorities discounted the possibility of a tsunami hitting the country's long coast.

The US Geological Survey said the epicenter of the quake was 40km west of Ovalle. It struck at 9:33 pm and caused buildings to shake in Santiago, 326km to the south-southeast.

The USGS reported a 5.1-magnitude aftershock at 9.47 pm in the same central Coquimbo region.

Chile's emergency services office said no damage to infrastructure was immediately reported and there were no indications of casualties. The navy said no tsunami alert was issued.

Chile is highly earthquake-prone. Its central region was rocked by a powerful 8.3-magnitude quake in September 2015, but the country's heavy investment in structural reinforcement of buildings and constant refinement of its tsunami alert system helped prevent a catastrophe.

A devastating 8.8-magnitude quake in 2010, and the tsunami it unleashed, killed more than 500 people and destroyed 220,000 homes.

 

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