Earthquake, aftershocks rock northern border

Jul 26, 2022

The 5.2 magnitude earthquake that struck Carchi Province Monday morning has been followed by more than a dozen aftershocks, including a 4.1 temblor early Tuesday.

Earthquake debris litters the street in San Gabriel.

Centered 17.8 kilometers from Tulcán, just south of the Colombia border, the earthquake injured eight people and destroyed or damaged 143 buildings, most of them in Tulcán and San Gabriel.

Risk Management officials say the quake destroyed at least two historic buildings in San Gabriel and damaged several others.

In its report, Ecuador Geophysical Institute said the extent of damage was the result of the shallow epicenter of the earthquake. “Because of the geology in the northern border area, the effects of a 5.2 earthquake would generally not be extreme but its center near the surface intensified the shaking.” The institute said the quake occurred on a fault line that begins in Imbabura Province and extends into Colombia.

In addition to Carchi Province, the earthquake was felt in Imbabura, Napo, Orellana, Pichincha, Pastaza and Sucumbíos Provinces, as well as in southern Colombia.

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