Guatemala Earthquake Kills 2, Triggers Landslides

By Reuters
February 17, 2022Americas
Guatemala Earthquake Kills 2, Triggers Landslides
Workers remove debris after a landslide and a fallen tree blocking a road following an earthquake that hit southwestern Guatemala, near Antigua, on Feb. 16, 2022. (Luis Echeverria/Reuters)

GUATEMALA CITY—An earthquake of magnitude 6.2 struck southwestern Guatemala early on Wednesday, the European Mediterranean Seismological Centre (EMSC) said, killing two people, collapsing roofs, and triggering landslides. The quake was at a depth of 96 km (60 miles), with the epicenter 16 km east of Tiquisate, Guatemala, EMSC said.

Tiquisate is in a mostly poor region on the Central American nation’s coastal planes, and is surrounded by large banana and palm oil plantations that export to the United States.

Guatemala’s disaster agency, the National Coordinator for Disaster Reduction (CONRED), pegged the earthquake at a magnitude of 6.8.

As of 8:30 a.m. local time, authorities had reported two fatalities, a woman in the city of Mixco, a western suburb of the capital, and a man in the highland city of Quetzaltenango. Both died of heart attacks, authorities said.

Images shared by the agency on social media showed rockfalls and uprooted trees blocking routes following the earthquake, including to Antigua, a colonial city popular with tourists.

The initial temblor was followed by two aftershocks of above magnitude 4 in the region, according to EMSC.

By Sofia Menchu

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