Tuesday, June 21, 2011

An earthquake measuring 6.3 strikes northern Chile

A powerful earthquake of magnitude 6.3 on the Richter scale was felt on Monday in northern Chile, according to the American Institute of Geophysics (USGS). The Chilean authorities do not report any casualties or damage. The quake occurred at 12 h 35 local time. The epicenter was located at a depth of 111.3 kilometers, about 90 km northeast of Calama, a city of more than 100 000 inhabitants, situated in the heart of the Atacama Desert.

The tsunami warning center for the Pacific ruled out at this point any threat of a destructive tsunami. Chile, a country with intense seismic activity, is regularly hit by severe earthquakes. February 27, 2010, an earthquake of magnitude 8.8, followed by a tsunami had devastated the south-central Chile, making five hundred and twenty to four dead, thirty-one missing and more than two hundred and twenty thousand families without shelter.

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