2010 Chile earthquakes: Government confirms 452 dead

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Damage produced by the earthquake and tsunami in Pichilemu.
Image: Diego Grez.

Chilean Government confirmed 452 deaths caused by the earthquake and tsunami that struck the central and south zones of Chile on February 27 and the Pichilemu earthquake on March 11. The official death toll was released yesterday by the Interior Undersecretary Rodrigo Ubilla.

Ubilla explained that "after a rigorous work in which participated Carabineros, the Investigation Police, the Medical Legal Service, and the Civil Registry, and was later checked by the Interior Undersecretary, we made a unique list of dead people and of denunciations of presumed dead."

In spite of this, Ubilla said that there are just 359 identified dead people, with death certificates and cause of death. He added that in 67 other cases, the dead people were identified by RUT (identification number), but there are no death certificates issued, that is the tool "that allows us to clarify if the death was produced directly by the earthquake or the tsunami." Carabineros reports, at least, 97 presumed disgraces denunciations, related to the cataclysm.