Chile earthquake update – damage assessed

The Chile earthquake — at a magnitude of 8.8 — was much stronger than the one that hit Haiti, but casualties and damages appear to be far less. Why?

The earthquake that struck Chile was far stronger than the one that struck Haiti in January.

But, initial reports show that damage was much more contained. While the death toll of 214 is only preliminary and is expected to grow, it’s still a thousand times lower than that of Haiti’s.

One emergency official quoted by Reuters said the number of deaths was unlikely to increase dramatically.

Because of its long history with earthquakes, which has contributed to an earthquake “consciousness” in Chile, and infrastructure that is built to higher standards, many hope that Chile will be spared the vast destruction that struck Haiti, even as it deals with one of its worst natural disasters in decades.

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