Advertisement

Magnitude 8 earthquake collapses buildings in remote Amazon jungle town in Peru

People survey damage, react as strong earthquake strikes northern Peru
WATCH ABOVE: People survey damage, react as strong earthquake strikes northern Peru

LIMA, Peru  — A powerful magnitude 8.0 earthquake struck a remote part of the Amazon jungle in Peru early Sunday, collapsing buildings and knocking out power to some areas but causing only one reported death.

READ MORE: Panama struck by 6.7 magnitude earthquake near Costa Rica

The quake struck at 2:41 a.m. and was centred in a vast nature preserve 92 km east of the small town of Yurimaguas. Helping limit damage was the earthquake’s depth, at 114 km below the surface, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. Earthquakes that are close to the surface generally cause more destruction.

President Martín Vizcarra called for calm before travelling to the zone with members of his cabinet to survey the damage. He said first reports indicate a bridge had collapsed and several homes and roads had been affected.

WATCH: Strong earthquake leaves some homes damaged with holes in Peru

Strong earthquake leaves some homes damaged with holes in Peru
Strong earthquake leaves some homes damaged with holes in Peru

“It’s a quake that was felt throughout the Peruvian jungle,” said Vizcarra, who was scheduled to host a regional summit Sunday in the capital with the presidents of Bolivia, Colombia and Ecuador.

Story continues below advertisement

Ricardo Seijas, chief of the National Emergency Operations Center, said one person died when a rock fell on a house in the Huarango district.

A preliminary survey by authorities found that six people were injured and 27 homes damaged across seven provinces. Three schools, three hospitals and two churches were also affected

In Yurimaguas, a bridge and several old houses collapsed, and the electricity was cut, according to the National Emergency Operations Center.

Images circulating on social media showed residents in several parts of the country panicked as the quake shook buildings.

The quake also awoke people in Lima, who ran out of their homes in fear.

“It was a really long quake,” said Maria Brito, who lives on the fifth floor of an apartment building in the capital. “It could’ve been worse, and luckily it’s over.”

Story continues below advertisement

Earthquakes are frequent in Peru, which lies on the Pacific’s so-called Ring of Fire. On August 15, 2007, a similarly sized quake struck near Lima, killing more than 500 people.