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Tsunami fears as massive quake hits Chile

A massive 8.8-magnitude earthquake struck southern Chile today destroying buildings and sparking fears of a tsunami.

The quake hit 197 miles southwest of the capital, Santiago, and at a depth of 36.9 miles in the early hours of this morning, the US Geological Survey reported.

Its epicentre was just 75 miles from Concepcion, Chile's second-largest city, home to more than 200,000 people.

Meanwhile a powerful earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.9 also rattled Japan's southern islands, injuring two and also prompting fears of a tsunami.





Strongest

There were no reports of serious damage from the quake, believed to be the strongest in a century to hit Japan's southern Okinawa Island.

The quake occurred off the coast of the island of Okinawa.

The only damage reported hours after the quake was ruptured water pipes in two locations, an Okinawa police official said.

The Meteorological Agency initially predicted a tsunami up to six feet near the Okinawan coast and warned nearby residents to stay away from the coastline. However it lifted the warning within two hours after observing only a small swelling of the tide.

Japan is one of the world's most earthquake-prone countries. In 1995, a magnitude-7.2 quake in the western city of Kobe killed 6,400.

hnews@herald.ie


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