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    Chile devastated by major earthquake

    Chile devastated by major earthquake

    Chile's second largest city suffered widespread devastation in a severe earthquake which has claimed scores of lives across the South American country.



    By Fiona Govan and David Barrett
    Published: 1:44PM GMT 27 Feb 2010

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    The major quake lasted one minute and was swiftly followed by a series of aftershocks ranging from 5.6 to 6.9 on the magnitude scale Photo: AP

    A man carries his belongings in an attempt to salvage them in Valparaiso Photo: AFP/GETTY

    Two women sit by a fire with their dog next to a pile of rubble Photo: AFP/GETTY

    Locals take to the streets of Santiago Photo: EPA

    A bridge has collapsed into the river Biobio Photo: REUTERS

    An image generated by NOAA West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center shows the projected tsunami travel times following an earthquake that struck Chile Photo: REUTERS


    The quake, which registered at magnitude 8.8 on the Richter scale, caused major structural damage to buildings in Concepcíon, which has a population of one million.
    The shock wave also triggered a potentially deadly tsunami which has already hit land at the southern Juan Fernandez Islands, about 400 miles off the coast of Chile, where it was reported to have caused "serious damage".




    Across the country the confirmed death toll reached 122 but was expected to rise.
    The first images broadcast from Concepcíon, located some 70 miles southwest of the epicentre of the earthquake, showed a building consumed by a massive blaze.
    Streets were shown full of rubble and broken glass and patients were pictured being evacuated from the local hospital as emergency crisis centres were set up in the streets.
    Others were pictured wandering dazed amongst the debris, wrapped in blankets, and covered in dirt.
    Entire buildings in the historical centre of Concepcíon had collapsed, cars flattened and bridges stretching across the Biobio river which dissects the city, brought down.
    Dramatic images broadcast on local television channels showed craters and fissures had opened up in the earth swallowing cars and parts of buildings.
    Rescue teams were frantically trying to reach people reportedly trapped in buildings in Concepcion. Local media reported isolated incidents of looting from pharmacies and commercial centres in the city.
    Several high-rise residential buildings in the city were pictured with the facades destroyed leaving interior rooms open to the elements.
    Michelle Bachelet, the Chilean President, declared a "state of catastrophe" and said: “With the quake of this magnitude, we cannot rule out other casualties.
    "People should remain calm. We're doing everything we can with all the forces we have."
    In capital Santiago, masonry crashed into the streets from buildings and the city was plunged into darkness by power failures.
    Thousands of people fled their homes when the earthquake struck at 3.34am local time, gathering in the streets with many still clothed in pyjamas. Images showed a road bridge that had collapsed trapping cars beneath it.
    The major quake lasted one minute and was swiftly followed by a series of aftershocks ranging from 5.6 to 6.9 on the magnitude scale.
    One man told local a television news channel in the city of Temuco: "Never in my life have I experienced a quake like this, it's like the end of the world."
    The earthquake struck 60 miles north-west of the Chilean town of Chillan, a spokesman for the US Geological Survey said.
    Vina del Mar, one of Chile’s most fashionable beach resorts was said to be badly hit in the quake and ensuing aftershocks.
    Several revelers reportedly died after they were struck by falling rubble as they left a nightclub on the seafront in the early hours of Saturday.
    The coastal city, 45 miles north-west of Santiago, was packed with weekenders visiting the resort for the final days of the summer holiday.
    Authorities said they had still to make contact with many outlying areas. Communication had been made difficult after telephone lines were downed across the country, they said.
    Chilean officials said the worst affected town appeared to be Parral, close to the epicentre.
    Santiago, 200 miles from the epicentre, suffered severe damage, with buildings and bridges destroyed and power-black outs.The city’s international airport remained closed after sustaining damage.
    Chilean television said there had been a fire involving chemicals in the town of Colina, north of Santiago, but that it was now under control.
    Teams of firefighters and police marched through the streets of Santiago urging calm and issuing instructions through megaphones.
    One Spanish visitor who was asleep in his room on the 17th floor of the Crown Palace hotel in Santiago told Spanish radio Cadena SER how he was woken by the earthquake.
    “It was a pretty intense shaking,” said Victor Garcia de la Concha.
    “The bedside lamp, which was quite a weight fell from the table and shattered. The drawers in the dresser in front of the bed were rattled open.”
    He reported that the building had not been damaged but guests were evacuated from their rooms and told to gather in the hotel lobby.
    Initial reports indicate that the quake could be felt across Chile and also sent tremors to several provinces in central Argentina including parts of the capital, Buenos Aires, 1,000 miles away from the epicentre.
    In 1960, Chile was hit by the world's biggest earthquake since records dating back to 1900.
    In that disaster, a 9.5 magnitude quake devastated the south-central city of Valdivia, killing 1,655 people and sending a tsunami which battered Easter Island and continued as far as Hawaii, Japan and the Philippines.
    Today's magnitude 8.8 quake is classified as a "great" earthquake that can cause "tremendous damage," according to the US Geological Survey.
    The earthquake that devastated Haiti's capital Port-au-Prince on January 12 was rated at magnitude 7.0, while the one that struck Indonesia on Boxing Day 2004 measured magnitude 9.2.

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    Evacuation warning as tsunami heading for NZ

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    Breaking 7:10 AM Sunday Feb 28, 2010
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    Expand Cars lie overturned on a Santiago highway following the 8.8-magnitude earthquake which struck Chile yesterday. Photo / AP



    <IMG class=articleImageBig title="Cars lie overturned on a Santiago highway following the 8.8-magnitude earthquake which struck Chile yesterday. Photo / AP" alt="Cars lie overturned on a Santiago highway following the 8.8-magnitude earthquake which struck Chile yesterday. Photo / AP"> Shrink Cars lie overturned on a Santiago highway following the 8.8-magnitude earthquake which struck Chile yesterday. Photo / AP



    The first wave of a tsunami, created by an 8.8 magnitude earthquake in Chile, is expected to reach the Chatham Islands by 7.05am.
    The quake hit 325 kilometres southwest of Santiago, at a depth of 35 kilometres at 3.34am local time (6.34pm NZT), the US Geological Survey reported.
    A wave measuring 2.34 metres was recorded near Chile and Tsunami warnings were issued over a wide area.
    The New Zealand Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management (CDEM) said areas of land could be threatened on the Chatham Islands and Banks Peninsula, while waves of less than 1 metre were likely for the entire east coast of New Zealand.
    Canterbury CDEM group said residents in low lying areas of Banks Peninsula bays, where the tsunami was expected to arrive about 8.30am, should be prepared for an evacuation.
    "People need to be ready to move to safety by 8am and may not be able to return for at least 24 hours."



    People on coastal areas were asked to stay off beaches, avoid the water (including rivers and estuaries) and refer to media or their local Civil Defence authorities for updates.
    The ministry asked that people avoid calling 111 for information, reserving that number for emergencies.
    Estimates show the first wave reaching the east coast of the North Island by 8am ahead of the main centres of Wellington (8.25am), Christchurch (9.05am) and Auckland (10.22am).
    "The first wave may arrive later and may not be the largest. Strong currents and unusual tidal effects may continue for several hours," the ministry said.
    "Based on historical events it is expected that the greatest wave heights could occur between 6 and 12 hours after the initial arrivals."
    The earthquake struck near the city of Concepcion in Chile, toppling buildings and collapsing bridges.
    Interior Minister Edmundo Perez said 82 people were confirmed dead, and that more deaths were possible, but he didn't expect the toll to rise much higher. Telephone and power lines were down, making it difficult to assess the full extent of the damage close to the epicenter.
    President Michele Bachelet said a huge wave hit the Juan Fernandez Islands. Radio stations reported serious damage on the archipelago, where Scottish sailor Alexander Selkirk was marooned in the 18th Century inspiring the novel Robinson Crusoe.

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    Massive earthquake strikes Chile



    The earthquake destroyed many roads

    A massive earthquake has hit central Chile and killed at least 122 people, though the toll is expected to rise.
    The 8.8 quake caused widespread damage, destroying buildings, bridges and roads in many areas, including the capital where a chemical plant caught fire.
    President Michelle Bachelet declared a "state of catastrophe" in affected areas and appealed for calm.
    A tsumami set off by the quake has triggered warnings in Pacific countries from Japan to New Zealand.
    Sirens warned people to move to higher ground in French Polynesia and Hawaii.




    Detailed map of quake


    The earthquake struck at 0634 GMT, 115km (70 miles) north-east of the city of Concepcion and 325km south-west of the capital Santiago. It is the biggest to hit Chile in 50 years.
    Official figures said 34 people had died in the region of Maule, but local journalists said the total there was likely to rise to 85.
    Deaths were also in reported in the regions of Santiago, O'Higgins, Biobio, Araucania and Valparaiso.
    Chilean President-elect Sebastian Pinera, who is due to take office next month, put the overall death toll at 122, adding that it could rise.
    National television said it estimated that at least 150 people had been killed.
    Aftershocks
    Television pictures showed a major bridge at Concepcion had collapsed into the Biobio river.
    Rescue teams are finding it difficult to reach Concepcion because of damage to infrastructure, national television reported.

    POWERFUL EARTHQUAKES
    Haiti, 12 Jan 2010: About 230,000 people die after shallow 7.0 magnitude quake
    Sumatra, Indonesia, 26 Dec 2004: 9.2 magnitude. Triggers Asian tsunami that kills nearly 250,000 people
    Alaska, US, 28 March 1964: 9.2 magnitude; 128 people killed. Anchorage badly damaged
    Chile, south of Concepcion, 22 May 1960: 9.5 magnitude. About 1,655 deaths. Tsunami hits Hawaii and Japan
    Kamchatka, NE Russia, 4 Nov 1952: 9.0 magnitude



    'Everyone fears aftershocks'
    In pictures: Chile quake
    Pacific nations gear for tsunami
    Chile well prepared


    In Santiago, where at least 13 people were killed, several buildings collapsed - including a car park where dozens of cars were smashed.
    A fire at a chemical plant in the outskirts of the capital forced the evacuation of the neighbourhood.
    Damage to Santiago international airport's terminal will keep it closed for at least 72 hours, officials said. Flights are being diverted to Mendoza in Argentina.
    President Bachelet said: "People should remain calm. We're doing everything we can with all the forces we have."
    Ms Bachelet said a "wave of large proportion" had affected the Juan Fernandez island group, reaching halfway into one inhabited area. Three people there are missing, local media say. Two aid ships are reported to be on their way.
    One resident of Chillan, 100km from the epicentre, told Chilean television the shaking there lasted about two minutes.
    Other residents of Chillan and Curico said communications were down but running water was still available.
    Many of Chile's news websites and radio stations are still not accessible.
    In Washington, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said the US was monitoring the situation, adding: "We stand ready to help [Chile] in this hour of need."

    Buildings collapsed over an extensive area


    The US Geological Survey (USGS) said the earthquake struck at a depth of about 35km.
    It also recorded at least eight aftershocks, the largest of 6.9 magnitude at 0801 GMT.
    The USGS said tsunami effects had been observed at Valparaiso, west of Santiago, with a wave height of 1.69m above normal sea level.
    One journalist speaking to Chilean national television from the city of Temuco, 600km south of Santiago, said many people there had left their homes, determined to spend the rest of the night outside. Some people on the streets were in tears.
    Chile is highly vulnerable to earthquakes as it is situated on the Pacific "Rim of Fire", on the edge of the Pacific and South American plates.
    Chile suffered the biggest earthquake of the 20th century when a 9.5 magnitude quake struck the city of Valdivia in 1960, killing 1,655 people.

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    Pacific nations gear for tsunami after Chile quake


    Tsunami travel times: National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration



    Nations around the Pacific Ocean are on full alert for a possible tsunami following the devastating earthquake that hit Chile on Saturday morning.
    Tsunami warnings have been sounded in an area affecting about a quarter of the globe.
    Waves will spread from the epicentre of the 8.8 quake in central Chile and may strike land bordering the Pacific in the next 24 hours.
    People in the Galapagos and on Easter Island have already taken refuge.
    Large waves are already reported to have struck Chile's Juan Fernandez island group, reaching halfway into one inhabited area. Three people there are missing, local media say. Two aid ships are reported to be on their way.
    Nations affected by the Pacific "Rim of Fire" have all sounded alerts, trying to estimate the anticipated time of arrival of any tsunami.
    Tsunami warning systems have been improved since December 2004 when an earthquake in Sumatra, Indonesia, sparked a tsunami that killed nearly 250,000 people.
    'Urgent action'
    The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center has said there may be "widespread damage" from high waves.
    "Authorities should take appropriate action in response to this threat," it said.

    The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Hawaii gathers information


    Parts of French Polynesia's coast were hit by waves of up to 6ft (2m) at 1630 GMT, but there was no damage immediately reported.
    It has been difficult to estimate the possible wave heights of any tsunami - the waves may not arrive at all or could be as high as 10 metres above normal sea level.
    In Tahiti, traffic was banned on roads less than 500m from sea, and residents on low-lying land were told to get to higher ground.
    American Samoa has urged residents to seek shelter, calling on coastal villagers to seek higher ground.
    Sirens were sounded in Hawaii to alert residents to the tsunami threat several hours before waves were expected.
    The first waves in Hawaii are expected about 1100 local time on Saturday (2100 GMT) and measure about 8ft (2.5m).
    John Cummings, Oahu civil defence spokesman, said: "Get off the shoreline. We are closing all the beaches and telling people to drive out of the area."
    New Zealand has warned waves up to 3m could hit the South Island and outlying islands. It set a time of 1805 GMT for a possible strike on the Chatham Islands.
    Australian officials warned of "possible dangerous waves, strong ocean currents and foreshore flooding" from Sydney to Brisbane.
    Japan may be hit at 0300 GMT on Sunday, the country's meteorological agency said, calling for people to be fully alert.
    California has also warned its coastal cities to prepare for possible tsunami waves, the first strike possibly around San Diego.
    The Cook Islands, Kiribati, Niue, Tonga, the Solomon Islands, Fiji and Vanuatu could also all be at risk.

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    Quake Survivors: 'It's Like End Of The World'


    4:12pm UK, Saturday February 27, 2010
    Gregor Hunter, Sky News Online
    Shaken survivors in Chile have spoken of their horror after an earthquake measuring 8.8 on the Richter scale struck the country during the night.



    A house demolished by the earthquake in Chile (Mario Andrés)


    Few reports have surfaced from Concepcion, close to where the earthquake first struck, though initial reports say the city is "devastated" and now looks "like a war zone".
    One witness, Macarena Railef, said the force of the quake was overwhelming even far from its epicentre.
    "I was in La Serena, a city located about 700 kilometres from Concepcion, but still, it was the worst thing I've felt.
    "And about 10 minutes after the quake stopped, the lights in all the city died, and everything turned to darkness.
    "The stop lights didn't work, and people started driving to high lands fearing a tsunami."
    Another man from Temuco, around 200 miles from the epicentre, told local television: "Never in my life have I experienced a quake like this, it's like the end of the world."
    One reporter from the French news agency AFP said that buildings in the capital Santiago "shook like jelly".
    A witness in Santiago called Enzo said: "There's still no news from the epicentre. The city is mute, there's no internet nor telephone connection.
    "With the main highway cut off, there's no connection to the rest of the country. And still I know nothing of my family in Concepcion."
    Former American Idol singer Elliott Yamin, who was taking part in a music festival in the city of Vina del Mar, also found himself caught in the earthquake, reporting via Twitter: "I swear I thought this was the end of my life!"
    He added: "Complete and utter choas on the streets... no power... my heart is beating outta my chest!... tsunami warning... I am only a mile inland!"
    President Michelle Bachelet has declared a "state of catastrophe" in central Chile.

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    Tsunami warning to every nation around the Pacific after massive 8.8 earthquake strikes Chile



    By Wil Longbottom
    Last updated at 6:29 PM on 27th February 2010



    Enlarge
    Vehicles that were driving along a highway that collapsed during the earthquake near Santiago are seen overturned

    There were fears tonight a tsunami could wreak devastation across the Pacific after a massive magnitude-8.8 earthquake struck Chile earlier today.
    The quake shattered buildings and bridges, killing at least 122 people and setting off a tsunami that threatened every nation around the Pacific Ocean - roughly a quarter of the globe.
    Chilean TV showed the catastrophic damage caused by the most powerful quake to hit the country in a half-century.
    In the second city of Concepcion trucks plunged into the fractured earth, homes fell, bridges collapsed and buildings were engulfed in flames. Injured people lay in the streets or on stretchers.
    TV Chile reported that a 15-storey building collapsed in the city and buildings caught fire, major highway bridges collapsed and cracks opened up in the streets.

    Many roads were destroyed and electricity and water were cut to many areas.
    There was still no word of deaths or damage from many outlying areas that were cut off by the quake that struck at 3.34am 200 miles southwest of Santiago.
    Experts warned that a tsunami could strike anywhere in the Pacific, and Hawaii could face its largest waves since 1964 starting at 21.19pm UK time, according to Charles McCreery, director of the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre.
    Tsunami waves were likely to hit Asian, Australian and New Zealand shores within 24 hours of the earthquake. The U.S. West Coast and Alaska, too, were threatened.
    A huge wave swept into a populated area in the Robinson Crusoe Islands, 410 miles off the Chilean coast, President Michele Bachelet said, but there were no immediate reports of major damage there.
    Chilean president Michelle Bachelet said the death toll was at 122 and rising, but officials had no information on the number of people injured.
    She declared a 'state of catastrophe' in central Chile.
    'We have had a huge earthquake, with some aftershocks,' Bachelet said from an emergency response centre. She urged Chileans not to panic.
    'Despite this, the system is functioning. People should remain calm. We're doing everything we can with all the forces we have. Any information we will share immediately,' she said.
    Powerful aftershocks rattled Chile's coast - 21 of them magnitude 5 or greater and one reaching magnitude 6.9 - the U.S. Geological Survey reported.

    Enlarge
    A woman sits in front a quake-damaged house in Talca, Chile, after the 8.8-magnitude earthquake

    Enlarge
    A resident takes photos of a building damaged in Talca, Chile
    Mrs Bachelet urged people to avoid travelling, since traffic lights are down, to avoid causing more fatalities.
    The airport for Chile's capital of Santiago airport was shut down and will remain closed for at least the next 24 hours, airport director Eduardo del Canto said.
    The passenger terminal suffered major damage, he told Chilean television in a telephone interview.
    TV images show smashed windows, partially collapsed ceilings and pedestrian walkways destroyed.
    The UK's Foreign Office tonight issued revised travel advice, warning that 'all but essential travel' to the Chilean regions of Biobio, Maule and Araucania should be avoided.
    'The capital Santiago has also been affected with some damage to older buildings and at least two road flyovers have collapsed,' said the statement.
    'If you are a British national in Chile, you should follow the advice of the local authorities.

    'The British Embassy is so far unable to receive calls.

    'If you are in Chile and require assistance or if you know someone in the affected areas of Chile, please ring the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on +44 207 008 0000.'



    Powerful: This image obtained from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows a model of the preliminary forecast of the tsunami triggered by the earthquake in Chile. The model shows waves of up to one metre travelling across the Pacific Ocean

    In Concepcion, nurses and residents pushed some of the injured through the streets on stretchers. Others walked around in a daze wrapped in blankets, some carrying infants in their arms.
    The epicentre was in the Pacific Ocean 70 miles from Concepcion, where more than 670,000 people live alongside the Bio Bio river.

    The quake also shook buildings in Argentina's capital of Buenos Aires, 900 miles away on the Atlantic side of South America.
    Marco Vidal - a program director for Grand Circle Travel who was travelling with a group of 34 Americans - was on the 19th floor of the Crown Plaza Santiago hotel when the quake struck.
    'All the things start to fall. The lamps, everything, was going on the floor. And it was moving like from south to north, oscillated. I felt terrified,' he said.
    Cynthia Iocono, from Linwood, Pennsylvania, said she first thought the quake was a train.
    'But then I thought, oh, there's no train here. And then the lamps flew off the dresser and my TV flew off onto the floor and crashed.'
    'It was scary, but there really wasn't any panic. Everybody kind of stayed orderly and looked after one another,' Miss Iocono said.

    Enlarge
    A resident sits on the debris of a collapsed house in the city of Talca, some 150 miles south of Santiago
    In Santiago, modern buildings are built to withstand earthquakes, but many older ones were heavily damaged, including the Nuestra Senora de la Providencia church, whose bell tower collapsed.
    An apartment building's two-level car park also flattened onto the ground floor, smashing about 50 cars whose alarms and horns rang incessantly. A bridge just outside the capital also collapsed, and at least one car flipped upside down.
    The quake struck after concert-goers had left South America's leading music festival in the coastal city of Vina del Mar, but it caught partiers leaving a disco.
    Enlarge
    The tsunami travel time following the quake

    'It was very bad, people were screaming, some people were running, others appeared paralysed. I was one of them,' Julio Alvarez told Radio Cooperativa in Santiago.
    Bachelet said she was declaring a 'state of catastrophe' in three central regions of the country.
    She said Chile has not asked for assistance from other countries.
    Several hospitals were evacuated due to earthquake damage, she said.
    Local television showed a buildings in flames in Concepcion and some residents have looted pharmacies and a collapsed grains silo, hauling off bags of wheat, television images showed.
    Broken glass and chunks of concrete and brick were strewn across roads and several strong aftershocks rattled jittery residents in the hours after the initial quake.
    One of the major bridges crossing the large Bio Bio river, which runs past Concepcion, has also collapsed.

    The Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre called for 'urgent action to protect lives and property' in Hawaii, which is among 53 nations and territories subject to tsunami warnings.
    'Sea level readings indicate a tsunami was generated. It may have been destructive along coasts near the earthquake epicenter and could also be a threat to more distant coasts,' the warning center said.
    It did not expect a tsunami along the west of the U.S. or Canada but was continuing to monitor the situation.

    Enlarge
    Debris: A man surveys the damage at the entrace of Santiago de Chile University in the capital
    Aid organisations in Britain have been quick to respond to today's earthquake in Chile.
    Oxfam is sending a team of water engineers and logisticians from Colombia to the stricken country today, along with its lead humanitarian co-ordinator for Latin America.
    The charity is also contacting partner organisations in Chile so that the humanitarian response is as fast as possible.
    Jeremy Loveless, Oxfam's deputy humanitarian director, said: 'Even though the severity of the situation is unclear, Oxfam is preparing for the worst and will be sending five staff out to Chile today to assess and consider how best to help the thousands of people affected by the disaster.
    'The team flying in have years of experience in responding to earthquakes and Oxfam also has partners in the country who can begin to help immediately.
    'Chile is a developed country with a very capable government and while it is unlikely that this disaster will be as severe as what we saw last month in Haiti, we want to be in place to help as soon as possible.'

    Save the Children today launched an emergency appeal for Chile.

    Enlarge
    Toppled: A building in Santa Cruz, Chile, lies flattened after the massive 8.8 earthquake this morning


    Enlarge
    A police officer controls the traffic aside of an elevated highway that collapsed in Santiago
    Donations to the Childrens Emergency Fund can be made through the charity's website Save the Children UK : Home.
    A spokesman said: 'We are assessing the situation and preparing to mobilise teams to support our partners working on the ground.'
    ShelterBox is also preparing to send a response team made up of two people from the UK and one from the United States.
    ShelterBox general manager Lasse Petersen said: 'ShelterBox will respond quickly where needed, as the unfolding news becomes clearer and the scale of need is confirmed.
    'A ShelterBox team is preparing to mobilise at the earliest opportunity.
    'Our thoughts go out to the people who have been affected by this disaster.'
    The British Red Cross released £50,000 from its Disaster Fund to support the response of the Chilean Red Cross.

    Enlarge
    A pickup truck sits in a hole caused by a major earthquake in Concepcion in this video grab


    Enlarge
    An old bridge is seen collapsed into the river Biobio after a major earthquake struck in Concepcion
    Pete Garratt, British Red Cross disaster relief manager, said: 'We are already receiving reports of damage and an increasing death toll from areas 156 miles from the epicentre.
    'We anticipate the situation in the worst affected areas closer to the epicentre to be much more serious.
    'Our fear is that this quake will have had large scale impact.
    'The Chilean Red Cross are experienced in reacting to natural disasters and we are making this immediate release of funds to support their relief efforts.'
    Donations to the British Red Cross disaster relief fund can be made at British Red Cross homepage | British Red Cross.
    The Haiti earthquake was a shallow 7.0 magnitude quake that killed about bout 230,000 people on January 12.

    The largest earthquake ever recorded struck the same area of Chile on May 22, 1960. The magnitude-9.5 quake killed 1,655 people and left 2 million homeless. The tsunami that it caused killed people in Hawaii, Japan and the Philippines and caused damage to the west coast of the United States.
    It was the strongest quake to hit Chile since a magnitude-9.5 temblor rocked southern Chile in 1960. Together with an ensuing tsunami, it killed at least 1,716 people.


    Massive: The earthquake measuring 8.8 struck north east of Concepcion, Chile, this morning and sparked tsunami warnings up South America


    Read more: Tsunami warnings after massive 8.5 earthquake strikes Chile | Mail Online

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    Sad for my chilian friends.

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    Evacuation warnings as tsunami wave hits Chatham Islands


    Breaking 7:49 AM Sunday Feb 28, 2010
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    An aerial view of the Chatham Islands. Photo / Janna Dixon



    The first wave has reached the Chatham Islands, after a massive earthquake hit Chile overnight.
    The wave measured 20cm, according to GNS Science, but authorities warn that succeeding waves could be higher.
    GNS Science staff said the waves had reached monitoring equipment off the coast of the Chathams and could slow have slowed down by 20 or 30 minutes.
    The wave could be further slowed by the continental shelf.
    The Civil Defence Emergency Management office has put a warning in place for the entire east coast of New Zealand and warn that a tsunami between one and three metres could be on its way after an 8.8 magnitude earthquake in Chile over night.
    The wave was scheduled to reach the Chatham Islands by 7.05am.
    The quake hit 325 kilometres southwest of Santiago, at a depth of 35 kilometres at 3.34am local time (6.34pm NZT), the US Geological Survey reported.

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    A wave measuring 2.34 metres was recorded near Chile and Tsunami warnings were issued over a wide area in the Pacific.
    The New Zealand Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management (CDEM) said areas of land could be threatened on the Chatham Islands and Banks Peninsula, while waves of less than 1 metre were likely for the entire east coast of New Zealand.
    The township of Waitangi in the Chathams at 7.05am and is the first New Zealand landmark scheduled to be hit, according to the CDEM warning.
    "The first wave may arrive later and may not be the largest. Strong currents and unusual tidal effects may continue for several hours," the warning said.
    Canterbury CDEM group said residents in low lying areas of Banks Peninsula bays, where the tsunami was expected to arrive about 8.30am, should be prepared for an evacuation.
    "People need to be ready to move to safety by 8am and may not be able to return for at least 24 hours."
    People on coastal areas were asked to stay off beaches, avoid the water (including rivers and estuaries) and refer to media or their local Civil Defence authorities for updates.
    The ministry asked that people avoid calling 111 for information, reserving that number for emergencies.
    Estimates show the first wave reaching the east coast of the North Island by 8am ahead of the main centres of Wellington (8.25am), Christchurch (9.05am) and Auckland (10.22am).
    However, those times have now been put back by between 20 and 30 minutes.
    In Auckland, a half marathon has been cancelled at Okahu Bay. Signs have been put up allerting competitors to the cancellation and speakers have been set up to broadcast National Radio.
    Wave arrival times in NZ
    Chatham Islands (Kaingaroa) 07.22
    Chatham Islands (Waitangi) 07.05
    North Cape 08.54
    Whangarei 09.15
    Auckland (North Head) 10.22
    Mt Maunganui 08.34
    East Cape 07.54
    Gisborne 07.59
    New Plymouth 10.56
    Napier 08.23
    Wanganui 09.49
    Wellington 08.25
    Nelson 10.05
    Marlborough Sounds (Tory Channel) 08.38
    Westport 10.08
    Greymouth 09.50
    Christchurch (New Brighton) 09.05
    Timaru 08.37
    Milford Sound 09.05
    Dunedin 08.29
    Bluff 08.58
    Stewart Island 09.21

  9. #9
    Thailand Expat Boon Mee's Avatar
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    I have close friends in Conception..hope they are all right...

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    Banned Muadib's Avatar
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    As do I in Santiago... Limited communications into the country right now...

    Tsunami warnings across the entire Pacific basin...

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    Mid
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    Foreign Ministry attempts to contact 35 Thais in Chile
    Boonsong Lipimas
    28 Febuary 2010

    BANGKOK, 28 February 2010 (NNT) – The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is trying to contact 35 Thais residing in Chile via the Chilean government after an 8.8-magnitude earthquake jolted the country early Saturday.

    Vimon Kidchob, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson and Information Department Director-General, stated that after the earthquake, the ministry hastily sought for information on 35 Thai people who are currently residing in the capital city of Santiago, 325 kilometers from the center of the earthquake. Due to technical difficulties in communication, the Embassy of Thailand in Chile is still unreachable. Primary information revealed that the Thai citizens did not reside near the center of the earthquake but further information on their whereabouts is still pending from contact with embassy officials.

    The latest updates will be reported to their relatives in Thailand by the Department of Consular Affairs under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Currently the quake is estimated to affect up to two million people and at least eight after-shocks have been reported since the initial quake, according to the US Geological Survey (USGS).

    thainews.prd.go.th

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    blackgang's Avatar
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    God Damn , news like this makes me glad I came to Thailand,, Chile was in competition for my perm residence when I was thinking about leaving the states.

    and a couple times I wished I had went there and now I am glad I didn't.

  14. #14
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    Thailand to donate $100,000 in aid for Chile
    March 02, 2010

    Thai cabinet has agreed to provide 100,000 U.S. dollars in assistance to earthquake ravaged Chile, deputy government spokesman Supachai Jaisamut said Tuesday.

    Thai Foreign Ministry was instructed to handle provision of the aid, the Bangkok Post website reported.

    The death toll from the devastating earthquake has reached 723, the Chilean government said on Monday.

    english.people.com.cn

  15. #15
    disturbance in the Turnip baldrick's Avatar
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    1.26 uSec

    March 1 (Bloomberg) -- The earthquake that killed more than 700 people in Chile on Feb. 27 probably shifted the Earth’s axis and shortened the day, a National Aeronautics and Space Administration scientist said.
    Earthquakes can involve shifting hundreds of kilometers of rock by several meters, changing the distribution of mass on the planet. This affects the Earth’s rotation, said Richard Gross, a geophysicist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, who uses a computer model to calculate the effects.
    “The length of the day should have gotten shorter by 1.26 microseconds (millionths of a second),” Gross, said today in an e-mailed reply to questions. “The axis about which the Earth’s mass is balanced should have moved by 2.7 milliarcseconds (about 8 centimeters or 3 inches).”
    Santa Maria Island off the coast near Concepcion, Chile’s second-largest city, may have been raised 2 meters (6 feet) as a result of the latest quake,

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    Thailand Expat Boon Mee's Avatar
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    These and hundreds of other survivors of Chile’s devastating earthquake have organized neighborhood watch groups, arming themselves and barricading streets to protect their damaged homes from looters. The groups have stepped in as police were overwhelmed by looting and soldiers were slow to restore order after an earthquake and tsunami.
    “We take care of ourselves here,” said 51-year-old Maria Cortes. . . . Throughout the quake zone, survivors lived in fear and fed on rumors of roving mobs. Gunfire punctuated the night in Concepcion, Lota and other towns.
    The eruption of banditry shocked the nation and put President Michelle Bachelet on the defensive. Chile’s much-praised urban rescue teams were hampered by slow-to-arrive equipment – and the looting of their local base in Concepcion.
    Almost everywhere, citizens have banded together to eat, get water and protect damaged or destroyed homes.


    My Way News - Chileans protect, feed themselves after quake
    This is why Americans have guns...
    A Deplorable Bitter Clinger

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