7.1 Chile Quake: Local Tsunami Risk

A 7.1 magnitude earthquake was detected Sunday near the central coast of Chile, US authorities said, noting the risk of local — but not Pacific-wide — tsunamis.

The US Geological Survey said the earthquake occurred at 2020 GMT, 69 kilometers (45 miles) northwest of Temuco, Chile, at a depth of 16 kilometers (10 miles).

The latest USGS report revised an earlier report giving the magnitude of the quake as 7.2, and the depth at 33 kilometers (20.5 miles), and describing the location as offshore from the Bio-bio region, which was devastated last year by a massive earthquake.

“Based on all available data a destructive Pacific-wide tsunami is not expected,” the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said in a bulletin.

“However, earthquakes of this size sometimes generate local tsunamis that can be destructive along coasts located within a hundred kilometers of the earthquake epicenter,” it said.

Chile lies on the Pacific rim of fire and is prone to violent earthquakes. In February last year it was hit by a massive 8.8 magnitude earthquake, which triggered a huge tsunami sweeping away entire villages.

The disaster left around 520 people dead, and caused an estimated 30 billion dollars in damage.

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