Anyone looking for loved ones in Mexico affected by the earthquake can call 1-52-5556-581111 to get in touch with representatives from the Consul General for assistance.
On the anniversary of a deadly 8.0 quake that struck central Mexico in 1985, a 7.1 magnitude earthquake hit the same region on Tuesday, killing at least 220 people, destroying dozens of buildings and leaving millions without power.
Tuesday’s quake also came on the heels of another magnitude 8.1 earthquake that killed 90 people in the region on Sept. 7. By about 11 p.m. PST, Mexico’s civil defense agency reported that at least 226 people died in the disaster, according to the Associated Press.
The temblor struck at about 1:15 p.m. local time, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The epicenter was about 3 miles east-northeast of San Juan Raboso, and 34 miles south-southwest of the city of Puebla.
It was felt in Mexico City, which is only about 75 miles away, and had a depth of 33 miles, according to USGS. Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto said 27 buildings had collapsed in the capital, Foro TV reported.
The quake hit hours after many people took part in drills and commemorative events on the anniversary of a devastating earthquake that killed some 9,500 more than three decades ago.
Residents realized Tuesday’s earthquake wasn’t a drill when rooms trembled.
Video showed rescue workers in hard hats and civilians in a Mexico City neighborhood combing through two-story high piles of rubble in search of survivors. Some carried away buckets full of debris.
Later in the night, by about 11 p.m., President Peña Nieto said 22 had died at a school that collapsed in Mexico City, AP reported. It is unclear if those fatalities are included in the overall death toll, but he said two of the bodies found are adults.
Thirty children and eight adults were still reported missing, the president said during comments broadcast on Financiero TV, AP reported.
Local television stations showed images of collapsing facades. After the quake, thousands of people streamed out of buildings in Mexico City’s Independence Monument, AP reported.
#SEDENAmx ha desplegado a más de 3,400 soldados en aplicación de #PlanDNIIIE para apoyar en zonas afectadas por el #Sismo de la #CDMX pic.twitter.com/MEm0VMInmV
— SEDENA México (@SEDENAmx) September 19, 2017
U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted: “God bless the people of Mexico City. We are with you and will be there for you.”
Officials said 3.8 million customers have had their electricity service interrupted.
The governor of Puebla said on Twitter that there were damaged buildings, and he posted photos of rubble in the city of Atlixco. Gov. Tony Gali urged residents to follow civil protection security protocols.
He also tweeted his condolences for the lives lost in the quake.
Lamentamos profundamente la pérdida de vidas tras el #sismo. Mi gobierno está actuando y brindando todo el apoyo necesario.
— Tony Gali (@TonyGali) September 19, 2017
Mexico Secretary of Education tweeted that 25 people were dead, 30 were missing and 11 rescued at an elementary school called the Enrique Rebsamen school. The secretary tweeted four people were dead and another 40 injured at one college campus in the city of Monterrey.
Three flights coming into Los Angeles International Airport from Mexico City and one from LAX to Mexico City were all canceled, LAX spokesperson Charles Pannunzio said.
The 8.1 magnitude quake that struck less than two weeks ago also shook Mexico City, though its epicenter was more than 450 miles away.
Tuesday’s quake epicenter is about 270 miles east of the 1985 earthquake epicenter.
Fourteen people were killed in a June 1999 earthquake just southeast of Tuesday’s temblor, according to USGS.
Adrian Wilson, a photographer from New York City who was visiting his fiancee, was eating in the capital when the earthquake struck.
“I was having lunch when the floor gently rocked as if a big truck went by,” Wilson said. “It then amplified in waves and the whole room started shaking. The building is from the 1930s and just survived a big earthquake, so I knew I would be OK.”
Wilson told CNN: “The doors were flapping open, the windows, everything.”
He took a quick video to show his children, he said.
“It’s almost a roller-coaster ride, where you think, wow, this is kind of cool. But then all of a sudden, you’re like this isn’t cool at all,” he said.
He looked outside and saw helicopters, and burning buildings and collapsed buildings. “Then you realize … this is no joy ride for anybody.”
Ricardo Ramos, a TV producer from Los Angeles, was scouting a location in a Mexico City cafe when the quake hit. He ran out into the street.
“Thank you, God, for keeping us safe once again. We got to experience another terrible #earthquake, this time during a location scout,” he wrote on Instagram.
Pena Nieto, who said he was on a flight to Oaxaca when the quake struck, advised residents to keep off the streets and to inspect damages to homes and other buildings before returning inside.
Well-known Southern California seismologist Lucy Jones tweeted that Tuesday’s earthquake could be more damaging that the one that struck the area earlier this month.
“A smaller quake closer to more people can do more damage,” she tweeted.
Así se sintió el sismo en la redacción de https://t.co/yZhRO4eZHB pic.twitter.com/V4694bCDJT
— Milenio.com (@Milenio) September 19, 2017
Devastating images from Mexico City. pic.twitter.com/RpF7sUq31s
— Jorge Guajardo (@jorge_guajardo) September 19, 2017