Tsunami drill conducted in northern Chile

13:50, August 20, 2010      

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A total of 80,000 people were evacuated in less than 20 minutes in a tsunami drill in northern Chile on Thursday, local officials said.

Alvaro Fernandez, governor of the Antofagasta region, said the drill covered the cities of Taltal, Antofagasta, Mejillones and Tocopilla, as well as some fishing communities, all of them over 1,200 km north of the capital Santiago.

"This was a success," Fernandez said. "All of them were evacuated in less than 20 minutes. In some cases were 10 minutes or 16 minutes. All of them were done within the time margin we had set for this drill."

He said more detailed data will be available later.

Central and southern Chile was hit by an 8.8-magnitude earthquake on Feb. 27 this year, which triggered a tsunami that devastated Bio Bio and Maule regions in central Chile.

The drill, supervised by Defense Minister Jaime Ravinet, was based on a simulation of an 8.1-magnitude earthquake.

Source: Xinhua


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