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HomeLatest NewsMagnitude 7.5 earthquake rocks Peru, topples centuries-old church tower - USA TODAY

Magnitude 7.5 earthquake rocks Peru, topples centuries-old church tower – USA TODAY

A magnitude 7.5 earthquake rocked northern Peru on Sunday, collapsing a 16th-century Catholic church tower although no deaths or serious injuries were immediately reported.

The quake struck at the sparsely populated region at 5:52 local time, the U.S. Geological Survey reported. The quake was deep, about 0.7 miles below the Earth’s surface, a factor that can sometimes reduces damage to buildings and infrastructure.

The epicenter was 25 miles northwest of Barranca, a coastal city of 63,000 people about 100 miles north of Lima.

Photos from the scene showed a pile of rubble where the historic, 45-foot tall tower had stood. Social media posts also showed damage elsewhere in the region, and the quake was felt across Peru’s northern border in Colombia and Equador.

Walter Culqui, mayor of the city of Jalca Grande, told RPP Noticias that, of the 3,000 families in the city, “60 or 70%” had some damage to their homes. Three people suffered minor injuries, Culqui said.

He said the city will need machinery to move the rubble from blocked roads and battered homes

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The Defense Ministry’s National Civil Defense Institute in Peru didn’t immediately report damage or injuries from the quake.

The quake struck hours after a magnitude 5.1 temblor with the epicenter in the outskirts of Lima rattled the region.

Contributing: The Associated Press

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