On Monday, southwestern Mexico was shaken by a powerful earthquake that was detected in Mexico City less than an hour later. The drill was held to remember the devastating earthquakes of 1985 and 2017.
According to the Mexican Seismological Service, the earthquake, which had a magnitude of 7.7, occurred around 2:05 PM EDT in the state of Michoacán in the country’s southwest. The quake’s magnitude was 7.6 according to the USGS.
One person was dead, according to tweets from President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, in Colima state’s Pacific vacation town and port of Manzanillo. Federal authorities claimed that the victim passed away as a result of a department store ceiling collapse.
Authorities also indicated that a few hospitals and other coastal facilities had minimal damage. Gov. Alfredo Ramrez of Michoacán stated that although there was property damage, no lives were lost.
No serious damage or casualties were reported in the capital, according to tweets from Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum.
Residents of Michoacán shared footage on social media of school children being evacuated, walls and buildings trembling, as well as groceries falling off grocery shelves.
A handful of Mexican states held their yearly earthquake exercise just 45 minutes before the quake struck. The exercise is held annually on the day that the capital city was hit by severe earthquakes in 1985 and 2017. On a tectonic border between the North American Plate and the Cocos Plate, thrust faulting led to the earthquake. It was near to earthquakes in 1985, 1995, and 2003 when this one struck. The greatest aftershock, measuring magnitude 5.3, was one of at least 408 that were noted.
The earthquake happened ironically on the fifth anniversary of the 2017 Puebla earthquake and the 37th anniversary of the 1985 Mexico City earthquake, which killed about 10,000 people. Less than an hour before the earthquake, shortly after lunchtime, a national earthquake exercise was held.
On Monday, as the seismic warning system went off for the second time in an hour, many city dwellers, students, and employees excited buildings and schools in search of safety on the streets. While some people sobbed, others hugged or held hands.
An executive at a computer company in Mexico City, Isabel Reyes, 28, remarked, “It’s crazy that it shook on Sept. 19, again. Half-jokingly, she suggested, “The government should proclaim the day a national holiday so we may leave the city.
Ms Reyes claimed she didn’t have time to leave her apartment in the Condesa district of Mexico City, so she simply sat and prayed there. Both the earthquakes in 1985 and 2017 severely damaged the Condesa neighbourhood, causing dozens of buildings to fall and trap hundreds of people.
A 48-year-old college lecturer named Manuel Ramos reported hearing creaking and grinding in his building shortly after returning to class following the drill. It’s a terrible sensation. You simply believe you won’t survive and might pass away, he added. He quickly left the school and was with his kids at a neighbouring park, many of whom were still bewildered and distressed.
A seismically active area close to the central Mexican coast is where this little earthquake struck. Three tectonic plates—the North American Plate to the northeast, the Rivera Plate to the northwest, and the Cocos Plate to the south—met close to where the earthquake happened. The North American Plate is swallowing up the Cocos Plate and the Rivera Plate. Compared to the North American Plate, the slower subducting Rivera Plate is migrating northwest at a rate of around 2 centimetres (0.79 in) per year, and the faster Cocos plate is doing the same at a rate of about 4.5 centimetres (1.8 in) per year.
Near the latest occurrence, several large earthquakes have happened. Northwest of the 2022 event, a thrust earthquake of a magnitude of 8.1 occurred in 1932. A neighbouring earthquake with a magnitude of 7.6 on January 27, 2003, claimed 29 lives. West of the 2022 disaster, on October 9, 1995, a magnitude 8.0 earthquake killed 49 individuals and made 1,000 others homeless. Exact 37 years prior, the region’s deadliest earthquake also struck Michoacán. This magnitude 8.0 earthquake caused thousands of fatalities, 30,000 injuries, and 100,000 homeless individuals.