A powerful 7.6-magnitude earthquake struck off northern Chile late yesterday in the wake of the fatal major quake on Tuesday, but there were no reports of damage and a precautionary tsunami alert along the coast and in neighbouring Peru was called off.
It was the strongest of several aftershocks that followed the 8.2-magnitude quake blamed for six deaths in the same region on Tuesday.
Chile’s emergency office Onemi said there were no initial reports of casualties or serious damage from the latest quake.
President Michelle Bachelet, who had gone to the area to inspect the damage from the earlier quake, was evacuated from her hotel in the city of Arica.
“I was evacuated like all the citizens and we have come here (to Arica’s emergency office) to see if there is any way we can help,” she said late last night.
The area is home to many of the biggest mines in Chile, the world’s top copper producer.
A spokeswoman for Glencore Xstrata’s and Anglo American’s Collahausi mine said the “process of normalisation” it was following after Tuesday’s quake was continuing without problems.