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Magnitude-7.1 quake shakes southern Chile

Jan 2, 2011 6:12:00 PM - thestate.com
A magnitude-7.1 earthquake shook southern Chile on Sunday, sending tens of thousands fleeing for higher ground for fear that it could generate a tsunami like the one that ravaged the coastline last year.

There were no immediate reports of deaths or damage, and Vicente Nunez, head of the National Emergency Office, said no tsunami alert was issued.

"There has been no harm to people, no harm to property," Nunez said. "We will continue monitoring."

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Hawaii also said a destructive Pacific Ocean-wide tsunami was not expected.

Some cell-phone communications and electrical power were knocked out in the Araucania region where the quake was centered, 370 miles (595 kilometers) south-southwest of the capital, Santiago.

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