Chile jolted by major 7.6-magnitude earthquake

A major 7.6-magnitude earthquake hit southern Chile on Sunday, prompting thousands to evacuate coastal areas, but no fatalities or major damage were reported.

Chile’s national emergency office (Onemi) lifted both the evacuation order and a tsunami watch three hours after the Christmas Day quake struck and told nearly 5,000 people who had been evacuated they could return to their homes.

Onemi said one bridge in the area was impassible as crews worked to restore electricity to 21,000 homes without power.

Officials had issued a tsunami warning earlier for areas within 620 miles (1,000km) of the epicentre of the quake 140 miles south-west of Puerto Montt, but the warning was downgraded to a tsunami watch. Eight mostly small ports in the area were closed, Chile’s navy said.

theguardian.com

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