5.8 magnitude earthquake hits Peru

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

An earthquake with a magnitude of 5.8 struck the Andean mountains of Peru on Monday, although Civil Defense officials said no damage was reported.

The tremor occurred at 17:52 local time, or 22.52 UTC, with the epicenter located in the Huanuco region of Puerto Inca. The United States Geological Survey said the epicenter struck at a depth of 53.4 miles (95.3 kilometers) and was centered about 240 kilometres (150 miles) northeast of the city of Huanuco and (300 miles) northeast of the nation's capital of Lima.

The El Comercio newspaper commented that the residents of Huanaco rushed out into the streets when the earthquake began, but there wasn't any damage.

A dozen earthquakes in Peru with magnitudes of four or more have occurred since the beginning of this year, and about a hundred such quakes are recorded yearly, according to the Earth Times. Last year there were 140 quakes with a magnitude of 4.0 or above.

In August 2007, a 7.9 earthquake struck the Ica province, just south of the capital. About 600 people were killed as a result, and much damage was caused to nearby infrastructure and buildings.