Earthquake strikes Chile

  • 26/12/2016
Earthquake Chile
The earthquake struck at 34.6km deep.

Officials have removed a tsunami warning after a magnitude 7.6 earthquake struck 225 km southwest of Puerto Montt in southern Chile, prompting an evacuation order for southern coastal areas.

The US-based Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said the tsunami warning was no longer in place for the area after earlier issuing one for areas within 1000 km of the epicentre of Sunday's quake.

New Zealand Civil Defence said there was no threat to this country.

Chile's National Emergency Services (Onemi) chief Ricardo Toro said a tsunami watch remained in place, and reiterated his call for Los Lagos residents to abandon beaches and go to higher ground. Toro said no fatalities had been reported.

Onemi said approximately 4000 people had evacuated the Los Lagos area.

The quake's depth was about 34.6 km, the US Geological Survey said. According to media reports, the quake was felt in the southwest Argentine city of Bariloche.

Chile is the world's leading copper producer, but there are no major mines located near the zone affected by the earthquake.

Chile's state-run oil company ENAP said its Bio Bio refinery in southern Chile was operating normally.

Chile has a long history of deadly quakes, including a magnitude 8.8 quake in 2010 off the south-central coast, which also triggered a tsunami that devastated coastal town.