Death toll from Mexico quake rises sharply

Death toll from Mexico quake rises sharply

The epicenter of the 7.1-magnitude natural disaster was 2.8 miles (4.5 kilometers) east-northeast of San Juan Raboso and 34.1 miles (55 km) south-southwest of the city of Puebla, in Puebla state, according to the US Geological Survey.

The quake, which struck Tuesday, leveled more than 40 buildings in the Mexican capital.

A major quake has rocked the capital of Mexico, killing more than 216 people - at least 22 are believed to be children. The quake's epicentre was 4.5 km east-northeast of San Juan Raboso and 55 km south-southwest of the city of Puebla.

At least 10 people died in Mexico state, which lies just to the west of Mexico City, while in Guerrero one person died.

Just hours earlier all the buildings in the city had carried out preparation drills for such an event on the anniversary.

The quake struck Mexico on the 32nd anniversary of the 1985 tremblor that killed almost 5000 people. A civil protection official told local TV that an unspecified number of people were trapped inside various buildings that caught fire in Mexico City.

Rescue workers and volunteers have searched through rubble and debris through the night for survivors in Mexico City and the surrounding metro area, which has a population of about 20 million.

U.S. President Donald Trump sent a message of support for Mexico from NY, where he is attending the United Nations General Assembly. "We are with you and will be there for you".

Children can be heard screaming as they are trapped between concrete slabs in Mexico City. Other video showed the side of a government building sheering off and falling into the street as bystanders screamed.

President Pena Nieto declared a state of national disaster, ordering the authorities and hospitals to assist the victims of the quake on the spot, while the government is being urged to access the emergency funds.

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