Saturday, February 27, 2010

8.8-magnitude Earthquake Hits Chile

A massive 8.8-magnitude earthquake struck Chile early Saturday, collapsing buildings, bridges, and downing phone lines. President Michele Bachelet declared a "state of catastrophe." There are reports of 76 fatalities, but that number could rise as the story continues to unfold.

The President reported being thrown from his bed. When he got up he found devastation, and nothing left on any wall. Power blackouts as far away as 200 miles from the epicenter, are just part of the problems Chileans face this morning. After shocks are already being reported, ranging from 5.6 to 6.9 on the magnitude scale. Injuries are expected to be extensive, due to blackout conditions, and hospitals are forced to operate on generators.

People mill about in the streets, somewhat confused as many had been sleeping when the quake struck. One mother was described as pushing her child down the street in a crib.

The massive quake has caused a tsunami and Easter Island along with the other pacific islands are under serious threat. However, it should also be noted that islands as far away as Hawaii, are under tsunami alert. This gives you some idea of the force of nature at work.

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