clear
Thursday September 3rd, 2015 11:53PM

7.2 earthquake shakes Mexico

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
ACAPULCO, Mexico (AP) -- A powerful magnitude-7.2 earthquake shook central and southern Mexico on Friday, sending panicked people into the streets. Some walls cracked and fell, but there were no reports of major damage or casualties.

The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake at about 9:30 a.m. (10:30 a.m. EDT; 1430 GMT) was centered on a long-dormant faultline northwest of the Pacific resort of Acapulco, where many Mexicans are vacationing for the Easter holiday.

It was felt across at least a half-dozen states and Mexico's capital, where it collapsed several walls and left larges cracks in some facades. Debris covered sidewalks around the city.

Around the region, there were reports of isolated and minor damage, such as fallen fences, trees and broken windows. Chilpancingo, capital of the southern state of Guerrero, where the quake was centered, reported a power outage, but service was restored after 15 minutes.

In Acapulco, 59-year-old Enedina Ramirez Perez was having breakfast, enjoying the holiday with about 20 family members, when her hotel started to shake.

"People were turning over chairs in their desperation to get out, grabbing children, trampling people," the Mexico City woman said. "The hotel security was excellent and starting calming people down. They got everyone to leave quietly."

The quake struck 170 miles (273 kilometers) southwest of Mexico City, where people fled high-rises and took to the streets, many in still in their bathrobes and pajamas on their day off.

"I started to hear the walls creak and I said, `Let's go,'" said Rodolfo Duarte, 32, who fled his third-floor apartment.

"This is really strong," said Gabriel Alejandro Hernandez Chavez, 45, an apartment building guard in Mexico City. "And I'm accustomed to earthquakes."

Mexico City Mayor Miguel Angel Mancera said there small power outages from fallen transformers but officials were working to restore the service.

The USGS initially calculated the quake's magnitude at 7.5, but later downgraded it to 7.2. It said the quake was centered 22 miles (36 kilometers) northwest of the town of Tecpan de Galeana, and was 15 miles (24 kilometers) deep.

In many cases of earthquakes in Mexico, it can take time to receive word from remote areas near the epicenter, where damage could be more extensive. There were no early reports of serious damage or injuries near the epicenter in Tecpan de Galeana.

Friday's quake occurred along a section of the Pacific Coast known as the Guerrero Seismic Gap, a 125-mile (200-kilometer) section where tectonic plates meet and have been locked, meaning huge amounts of energy are being stored up with potentially devastating effects, said USGS seismologist Gavin Hayes.

The last large quake that occurred along the section was a magnitude-7.6 temblor in 1911, Hayes said.

He said scientists will be watching the area more intensely because moderate quakes such as Friday's can destabilize the surrounding sections of seismic plate and increase the chance of a more powerful temblor.

The USGS says the Guerrero Gap has the potential to produce a quake as strong as magnitude 8.4, potentially much more powerful than the magnitude-8.1 quake that killed 9,500 people and devastated large sections of Mexico City in 1985.

Mexico City itself is vulnerable even to distant earthquakes because much of it sits atop the muddy sediments of drained lake beds that quiver as quake waves hit.

The 1985 quake was centered 250 miles (400 kilometers) from the capital on the Pacific Coast.
© Copyright 2015 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Judge denies motions to move, delay Tsarnaev trial
Lawyers for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev asked a federal appeals court Wednesday to overturn a judge's decision to not move his upcoming trial out of state.
10:02PM ( 8 months ago )
High court to adopt electronic filing of cases
The Supreme Court is belatedly developing an electronic filing system similar to those used in courts around the country, Chief Justice John Roberts said Wednesday in his annual end-of-year report.
7:57PM ( 8 months ago )
Storm brings snow, cold to West for New Year's
A blustery winter storm dumped snow and ice across the West on Wednesday, making driving treacherous in the mountains from California to the Rockies and forcing residents and party-goers in some usually sun-soaked cities to bundle up for a frosty New Year's.
5:19PM ( 8 months ago )
U.S. News
Grass fire impacts rush hour traffic on 985
Rush hour traffic on I-985 was slowed by a grass fire Wednesay afternoon with one lane closed while firefighters fought the blaze.
10:19PM ( 8 months ago )
Hall County conviction, sentencing to be reviewed by SCOGA
The State Supreme Court has agreed to hear the appeal of a Hall County man when they reconvene in January.
2:37PM ( 8 months ago )
Local/State News
With Thomas playing only 1st quarter, No. 16 Georgia Tech routs FCS school Alcorn State 69-6
ATLANTA (AP) — Freshman Marcus Marshall ran for 184 yards and two long touchdowns in his college debut, Patrick Skov scored three TDs in his first game at Georgia Tech, and the No. 16 Yellow Jackets r...
11:06PM ( 47 minutes ago )
Domestic dispute sees Gainesville baby abandoned on Rabbittown roadway
Two Gainesville residents involved in a domestic dispute were arrested Thursday afternoon after they abandoned their baby on the side of a Rabbittown road.
8:37PM ( 3 hours ago )
Report: Dog charged police, prompting gunfire in wrong home
A dog charged police officers who entered the wrong Atlanta home searching for a burglar, prompting gunfire that seriously wounded an officer, injured the homeowner and killed the animal, according to a police report released Thursday.
6:43PM ( 5 hours ago )
Settlement reached for one Hall Co. firefighter injured in 2014 training accident
One of the Hall County firefighters injured in a training accident in July 2014 has reached a settlement with Sutphen Corporation, the company who manufactured the ladder truck that malfunctioned in the accident.
2:52PM ( 9 hours ago )
Ga. students perform better on SAT, national average drops
The Georgia Department of Education (DOE) reported Thursday that Georgia students’ SAT scores for 2015 increased five points, even as the national average dropped seven points.
By AccessWDUN Staff
2:05PM ( 9 hours ago )