Strong earthquake strikes central Peru, no casualties

October 29th, 2011 - 2:21 am ICT by BNO News  

ICA, PERU (BNO NEWS) — A strong earthquake struck south of the Peruvian city of Ica on early Friday afternoon, seismologists said, but there were no immediate reports of major damage or casualties.

The 6.7-magnitude earthquake at 1.54 p.m. local time (1854 GMT) was centered about 51 kilometers (32 miles) south-southwest of Ica, the capital of the region which carries the same name. It struck about 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) deep, making it a shallow earthquake, according to the Geophysical Institute of Peru.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS), which measured the strength of the earthquake at 6.9 on the moment magnitude scale (MMS), estimated several hundred people may have felt ‘very strong’ shaking. An estimated 346,000 others may have felt strong shaking, while 6.6 million others could have felt light to moderate shaking.

Neither the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center nor the Peruvian government issued a tsunami warning. “No destructive widespread tsunami threat exists based on historical earthquake and tsunami data,” the warning said in a bulletin.

Despite the earthquake being felt as far away as the capital of Lima, which is some 288 kilometers (178 miles) south-southeast of the epicenter, there were no immediate reports of major damage or casualties.

In late August, several people were injured when a powerful 7.0-magnitude earthquake struck 44 kilometers (27 miles) east of Contamana, a town in the Loreto Region in northeastern Peru. It struck about 149 kilometers (92 miles) deep.

And in August 2007, at least 514 people were killed and more than 1,000 others were injured when a massive 8.0-magnitude earthquake struck the central coast of Peru, generating a small tsunami which flooded some areas.

But Peru’s most catastrophic earthquake happened in May 1970 when a powerful 7.9-magnitude earthquake struck about 36 kilometers (22 miles) off the coast of northwestern Peru, killing at least 66,794 people. More than 50,000 others were injured.

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