Nicaragua Earthquake: Tsunami Alert Declared After Strong Tremor

Nathan Francis - Author

Dec. 25 2017, Updated 4:53 p.m. ET

A Nicaragua earthquake rocked the nation on Saturday, prompting a tsunami alert for the Pacific coast.

The earthquake struck midday on Saturday, measuring a 6.5-magnitude, the US Geological Survey noted. It was centered off of the nation’s Pacific coast, being registered at 11:34 local time. Geologists pinpointed it to about 31 miles (50 kilometers) west of Masachapa, a community on the country’s Pacific coast.

The country’s seismological institute measured the earthquake a bit stronger, at 6.6, and as a result declared a tsunami alert because of the strength of the tremor.

The region has been very active for earthquakes in the past year. To the north, Mexico has seen a series of earthquakes of varying degrees of strength.

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In August, a particularly strong series of tremors hit near the Mexico-United States border. There were more than 70 earthquakes near the south end of the Salton Sea, NBCNews reported. The largest earthquake, one measuring with a 5.5 magnitude, hit Brawley, California, while another 5.3-magnitude earthquake in Brawley was felt through San Diego County. It was followed by a 4.9-magnitude aftershock.

The earthquake near San Diego was so strong that residents felt the shocks downtown and throughout nearby communities, though there were no injuries.

A separate quake that hit in nearby Costa Rica in September also triggered a tsunami warning. The powerful 7.6-magnitude shook buildings and knocked out power in some areas of the capital city of San Jose. The quake’s epicenter was about 87 miles from San Jose in western Costa Rica, but it was felt as far as Nicaragua.

Though that quake did not cause any damage or injuries, it did trigger a brief panic after the tsunami warning. Residents said phone lines were jammed and people were crying after the shock of the earthquake.

There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries after the Nicaragua earthquake.


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