Powerful quake shakes Guatemala and El Salvador, no casualties reported 


GUATEMALA CITY  — A major earthquake struck off the coast of Guatemala on Thursday, damaging buildings and downing trees as well as causing powerful tremors in neighbouring El Salvador. There were no reports of casualties. 

The quake, measured at a magnitude of 6.8 by the US Geological Survey, struck 38 kilometres (24 miles) southwest of Puerto San Jose at a depth of 46.8 kilometres. 

A deeper earthquake of similar magnitude struck the interior of Guatemala last week, killing at least two people and damaging buildings. 

“We have checked 13 out of the 22 departments, and we don’t have any victims, just light damage to structures in two places: Antigua Guatemala and Totonicapan,” said Ileana Recinos, a spokeswoman at Guatemala’s Conred national emergency service. 

Edwin de Leon, a spokesman for fire services in Guatemala, told local radio the quake had damaged houses, bringing down some roofs, but also said no casualties had been reported. 

El Salvador’s emergency services said it had no initial reports of casualties, and the government said on Twitter no tsunami alert had been issued as the result of the quake. 

Luis Felipe Puente, the head of Mexico’s civil protection authority, told Reuters the quake was felt in the state of Chiapas on the Guatemalan border, but said there were no initial reports of damage. 

A spokesman for emergency services in Honduras said the quake was felt in the west of the country, but that there were no reports of damage. (Reuters) 


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