Reuters just reported that at least 149 people died in today’s Mexico City earthquake. However, as of a few hours later, AP reported that 226 people had died. The toll may continue to increase. The magnitude 7.1 earthquake struck the area around New Mexico early on Tuesday.
Twitter videos show buildings collapsing. After the collapse, rescuers frantically dug under the rubble for people who may have survived.
The Interior Secretary, Miguel Angel Osorio Chong, told local television that rescue teams were painstakingly working with shovels and picks to help those who are trapped.
“We have some buildings where we have reports that there could be people inside. They are doing it with lots of caution,” said the interior secretary.
In all, 44 buildings were destroying, according to Mexico City Mayor Miguel Angel Mancera. Several more major gas leaks and major fires also occurred. The buildings that collapsed included apartment blocks, a school, a factory and a supermarket.
When the earthquake occurred, on the 32nd anniversary of the earthquake that devastated Mexico City in 1983, citizens had just taken part in a drill. Every September 19th, Mexicans in the area have a customary in memory of the 1985 earthquake.
After the quake, hundreds of volunteers and rescue went to work to rescue those trapped. Some people even used their bare hands to dig through the rubble.
“My wife is there. I haven’t been able to communicate with her. She is not answering, and now they are telling us we have to turn off our cellphones because there is a gas leak,” said Juan Jesus Garcia, 33, choking back tears.
On Twitter, more pleas for lost relatives appeared. One of these was for 8-year-old Alexis Vargas Macias, says Reuters. The little girl was at Enrique Rebsamen school when the quake hit. The school collapsed, and according to local media, several children were killed.
In addition to the 149 deaths, 3.8 million lost power. There’s no word when the power will be restored.
At the same time as the earthquake, Mexico also experienced a small volcano eruption. Mexico’s Popocatepetl volcano erupted. In Atzitzihuacan, a town on the slope of the volcano, a church collapsed during Mass. Fifteen people died.
In other news, North Korea just threatened U.S. Safety. Read Kim Jong Un's statement.