More than 200 people, including 21 schoolchildren, are dead after a magnitude 7.1 earthquakerocked central Mexico on Tuesday afternoon, hitting on the 32nd anniversary of the biggest quake to strike the country’s capital.
Yesterday’s earthquake was centered about 75 miles southeast of Mexico City and caused extensive damage, leveling at least 44 buildings, including homes, schools and office buildings, according to Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto, who did a flyover of the city Tuesday afternoon.
Among the dead are at least 25 people — 21 students and four teachers — at a collapsed primary school in the south of the capital. So far, 11 people have been rescued, but two students and one teacher remain missing, according to Education Minister Aurelio Nuno.
In Mexico City alone, 52 people have been rescued from damaged buildings, according to city officials.
President Donald Trump spoke with Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto Wednesday to extend condolences for the lives lost and the damage caused by the earthquake, the White House said in a statement. Trump also offered assistance and search and rescue teams, which are being deployed now.
Rescuers continued to comb through the wreckage, looking for survivors Wednesday, pausing to listen for voices. Relatives told The Associated Press they received WhatsApp messages from two girls inside.
“Children are often the most vulnerable in emergencies such as this, and we are particularly concerned because schools across the region were in session and filled with students,” said Jorge Vidal, the director of operations at Save the Children in Mexico.
Hanna Monsivais, the programs coordinator for Save the Children in Mexico, said she has been out on the streets in Mexico City with hundreds of other people trying to help their neighbors. But entire streets have been cordoned off, and numerous buildings are still too dangerous to enter because of damage.
“Volunteers are bringing water, food, clothes and face masks so that they can help the official authorities move all the debris and rocks, because there are still people trapped under buildings,” she said.
Read more at ABC News.