Thursday, September 17

One million evacuated after Chile tsunami warning

A magnitude 8.3 earthquake has struck off the coast of Chile, killing at least five people and forcing one million to flee their homes.

The quake shook buildings late on Wednesday in the capital city of Santiago, about 280km to the south, and flooded some coastal areas under a tsunami warning.

President Michelle Bachelet said she planned to travel to the areas worst affected by the quake, the biggest to hit the world’s top copper producer since 2010.

“Once again we’re having to deal with another harsh blow from nature,” Bachelet said in a televised statement.

Television images showed panicked people gathered in streets lined with damaged buildings, while big waves flooded roads in some cities along the coast.

The quake also damaged homes, buildings and injured several people and was felt as far away as Buenos Aires in Argentina. Frequent aftershocks continued to shake the country.

Tsunami advisories were issued for parts of South America, Hawaii, California and French Polynesia, although waves are generally expected to be small.

As far away as New Zealand, authorities urged residents in eastern coastal areas to stay out of the water and off beaches amid expected “unusually strong currents and unpredictable water flows near the shore.”

(Al Jazeera)

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