Quake in Mexico 'strongest in a century'

A woman talks on a phone near a building damaged by an earthquake that struck off the southern coast of Mexico late on Thursday in Mexico City
Massive Earthquake Rocks Mexico as the Country Prepares for Hurricane Katia on Gulf Coast
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11 September, 2017

Officials raised the death toll from Thursday night's quake as more bodies were found in the southern states of Oaxaca and Chiapas.

In neighboring Tabasco state, two children were killed, the governor said.

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto said the quake was the strongest in a century, according to CNN.

The day after an 8.2 magnitude quake hit Mexico's Pacific coast policemen stand next to collapsed buildings in Juchitan de Zaragoza, state of Oaxaca September 9, 2017.

The powerful natural disaster was felt as far away as the capital, Mexico City, sending residents out in the streets for fear of aftershocks.

Hundreds of buildings collapsed or were damaged, power was cut at least briefly to more than 1.8 million people and authorities closed schools on Friday in at least 11 states to check them for safety.

Nieto made the declaration after visiting the town of Juchitán, where the quake hit hardest.

Oaxaca state Gov. Alejandro Murat told local news media Friday that at least 23 people in his state died after the magnitude 8.1 quake that hit just before midnight.

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Mexico's seismology service estimated it at 8.2 magnitude while the US Geological Survey put it at 8.1 - the same as in 1985, the quake-prone country's most destructive ever.

Mexico has also had to contend with the approach of Hurricane Katia.

At least 90 people killed across the country as emergency workers still look for victims under the rubble.

Mexico sits atop five tectonic plates, whose movement makes it one of the most seismically active countries in the world.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said there is a possibility of widespread and unsafe waves on the coasts of Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, Honduras and Ecuador.

The odd lights people saw and documented on social media are believed to be part of an unusual phenomenon, which is caused by the activation of electrical charges on certain types of rock during a quake.

Pena Nieto said authorities were working to re-establish supplies of water and food and provide medical attention to those who need it.


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