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Powerful earthquake generates tsunami off coast of Chile

Powerful earthquake generates tsunami off coast of Chile

(Santiago)  --  Chilean officials say at least five people are dead after a magnitude 8.2 earthquake struck off the country's coast.  The quake has prompted a tsunami warning for Chile's coastline which will remain in effect for at least another six hours.  The earthquake struck about 60 miles northwest of the mining town of Iquique.  The town is currently under military control after more than 300 prisoners escaped from a jail following the earthquake.  Emergency officials in Chile say there are reports of landslides partially blocking some highways and roads.  

People there have been asked to evacuate the entire coast because of the tsunami warning. Early reports say wave activity measured over six feet. The tsunami could be destructive along the coasts near the quake's epicenter and could also threaten more distant coasts.  Four years ago, a magnitude 8.8 quake triggered a tsunami that hit several coastal towns in central and southern Chile.  That disaster killed over 500 people. 

 

Photo: http://earthquake.usgs.gov/

 

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