7.6 earthquake hits Mexico

Posted at 3:01 PM, Mar 20, 2012
and last updated 2012-03-20 15:22:29-04
By the CNN Wire Staff

MEXICO CITY (CNN) — A strong earthquake rattled residents in Mexican resort towns and the nation’s capital Tuesday, but there were no immediate reports of serious damage or injuries.

The U.S. Geological Survey reported the quake had a magnitude of 7.6, while Mexican President Felipe Calderon said in a Twitter post it was 7.8..

The epicenter was about 15 miles (25 km) east of Ometepec, Guerrero, the USGS said, and its depth was about 11 miles (17 km).

The agency earlier reported the magnitude of the quake at 7.9, but later revised that figure.

Residents rushed into the streets after feeling the temblor in Mexico City. Tourists and residents also felt the earthquake in the resort city of Acapulco.

Local authorities in Guerrero state reported aftershocks.

Calderon said in another Twitter post that there were no immediate reports of serious damage.

Residents in the southwestern states of Oaxaca and Guerrero and the eastern state of Veracruz reported that phone service had been knocked out in their areas.

In Mexico City, Mayor Marcelo Ebrard sent tweets saying that there was no visible damage in the capital and that the sprawling city’s strategic services and water system were functioning. Regardless, he tweeted, numerous buildings were being evacuated.

Earthquakes are a frightening experience for the more than 20 million residents of Mexico City, where about 10,000 people perished in a massive quake in 1985.

The city, built on volcanic ash and clay, is particularly vulnerable to temblors.

CNN’s Rey Rodriguez and Rene Hernandez and contributed to this report.