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Chile, earthquakes, and tourism

  • Published by Ozgur Tore

A strong 8.2-magnitude earthquake has struck off the northwest coast of Chile on Tuesday at 8:46 p.m. local time.

chile-earthquake8-2The strong quake triggered small landslides, cut power and generated a tsunami. U.S. Geological Survey said the center point of the quake is about 60 miles northwest of Iquique and had a depth of 12.5 miles.

Four men and one woman died -- two who suffered heart attacks and three who were crushed, said Interior Minister Rodrigo Penailillo.

"Many people are fearful after experiencing the powerful earthquake in 2010, so they immediately fled for higher ground when they heard the tsunami warning," said Fabrizio Guzman, World Vision emergency communications manager in Chile.

The catastrophic 8.8 quake that hit central Chile in 2010 killed more than 500 people and was estimated to have cost upwards of $30 billion. The majority of the damage was infrastructure-related -the government rebuilt 500,000 homes and repaired 1 million. The quake affected nearly 75 percent of Chile’s population.

Tourism, fishing, forestry, and wine industries were affected by the disaster in 2010 and will be hard-hit economically this time around.

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