MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – The death toll from the massive earthquake that struck Mexico on Thursday night has risen to 65, as more victims were registered in the poor southern states hardest hit by the disaster, authorities said on Saturday.
Luis Felipe Puente, head of Mexico’s national emergency services, said three more bodies had been found in the state of Chiapas and another in Juchitan, the coastal town in neighboring Oaxaca that suffered the greatest loss of life.
The 8.1 magnitude quake off the coast of Chiapas on Thursday was stronger than a devastating 1985 temblor that flattened swathes of Mexico City and killed thousands. In Juchitan alone, thousands of houses collapsed, the town’s authorities said.
Relief efforts in the south continued through Saturday, with many of the people worst affected still wary of returning indoors to weakened buildings, fearing they could be brought down by aftershocks.
The quake was the most powerful to hit Mexico since another 8.1 tremor in 1932. The U.S. Geological Survey said the 1985 quake measured 8.0 magnitude, though it was much closer to Mexico City and shallower than Thursday‘s.
Reporting by Dave Graham; Editing by Cynthia Osterman