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Wednesday, August 20, 2014, 11:51 a.m.
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Strong quake hits Mexico, Guatemala; 2 dead

By The Associated Press

This article was published July 7, 2014 at 8:30 a.m.

TUXTLA GUTIERREZ, Mexico — A magnitude-6.9 earthquake on the Pacific Coast jolted a wide area of southern Mexico and Central America on Monday. At least two people are reported dead and dozens of houses damaged in Guatemala.

The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake hit at 6:23 a.m. on the Pacific Coast 1 mile north-northeast of Puerto Madero, near the Guatemala border. It initially calculated the magnitude at 7.1 but later lowered the figure to 6.9.

Firefighters spokesman Raul Hernandez said at least two people died in their homes from collapsed walls in the Guatemalan town of San Marcos near the Mexico border. Hernandez reported damage in at least 30 homes, as well as landslides and toppled utility poles.

There were reports of power failures and rock slides on some roads in Guatemala. Photos posted on social media sites and published by the Guatemalan newspaper Prensa Libre showed buildings with huge cracks across their facades in San Marcos, and one which apparently suffered a partial collapse.

In the Mexican state of Chiapas, where the quake was centered, panicked people poured into the streets and the Red Cross said it was treating some frightened adults and children.

The quake was centered 37 miles below the surface.

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