A powerful earthquake has jolted Mexico City – measuring magnitude 7.1 according to the US Geological Survey (USGS) – causing buildings to sway sickeningly on the anniversary of a 1985 quake that did major damage to the capital.
The extent of damage or injuries was not immediately clear, but people fled office buildings along the central Reforma Avenue.
Mexico’s seismological agency estimated its preliminary magnitude at 6.8 and said its centre was east of the city in the state of Puebla. That municipality is about 40 miles southeast of the capital.
Pictures fell from walls and objects were shaken off of flat surfaces. Some people dove for cover under desks.
A video that appear to show the earthquake in action show lights swaying above people crowding into hallways for safety, and then those lights seeming to lose power.
The earthquake hits less than two weeks after a devastating 8.1 magnitude trembler that impacted off the coast of Chiapas. That event killed at least 61 people, and left devastation primarily in the souther Mexican states of Chiapas and Oaxaca. All told, those two states have a combined population of nine million people, and are impoverished.
The USGS estimated that there were at least six aftershocks exceeding a 5.0 magnitude after that quake earlier this month. An estimated 1.85 million homes lost power after the initial shock wave, but 74 per cent of those homes saw services restored within hours.