One of the most powerful earthquakes to ever hit Mexico killed at least 32 people late Thursday night and crippled hundreds of buildings.
The natural disaster of magnitude 8.1 quake, which was felt as far as Mexico City and Guatemala City, was also registered off Mexico's southern coast just as heavy rains from Hurricane Katia lashed the east.
Tsunami warning has been issued for Mexico, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Guatemala, El Salvador and Costa Rica. The centre warned waves could reach over ten feet along the Mexican shore near the epicentre of the quake. President Enrique Pena Nietosaid no one was reported dead at the hotel.
Operation USA has ties to Mexico, having worked there in the wake of previous disasters, including the major 1985 quake and most recently following major flooding in 2013.
Alejandro Murat told local television that 17 of the deaths were recorded in the southeastern town of Juchitan.
Education Secretary Aurelio Nuño Mayer announced that classes had been suspended in 11 of the country's 31 states and in Mexico City to assess the damage at schools. According to the preliminary estimates by the authorities, two people also died in the state of Tabasco and seven in the state of Chiapas. The quake hit off the coast of Chiapas.
The U.S. Geological Survey initially estimated the magnitude at 8.0 before revising it to 8.1 The Mexican Seismological Agency rated it at magnitude 8.4. At least five deaths have been confirmed in Mexico, with the death toll expected to rise.
Chiapas Gov. Manuel Velasco told Foro TV that there have been reports of damage, including hospitals that have lost power and buildings with collapsed roofs, CNN reported. He called on people living near the coast to leave their houses as a protective measure.
And the country faces the prospect of Hurricane Katia hitting in a few days.
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