Chile earthquake: First-hand notes from Camilo of Disorder Magazine

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Camilo Salas K. from Disorder Magazine in Chile (a very cool publication about music and culture, in the same eclectic/irreverent vein as Boing Boing) writes to us from the capital city of Santiago:

camilo.jpg The situation right now is very bad. We are getting news of the most bad places (the south center of Chile) and the news is no good. I am listening about buildings on the floor, hospitals with a lot of people and aftershocks. Every 5 or 10 minutes we feel shakes from the earth. Right now I am experiencing a VERY LONG ONE. The news says there are over one hundred dead people and lot of injuries. I have electric light and internet, i can use my cellphone, with some difficulty, but it works.

In the most damaged areas there is no electricity or water, but you can buy food. The supermarkets are full of people, but they are working. The most difficult thing is that we dont have a lot of information about the most damaged places, but suddenly news appears about huge fires last night and people escaping from one of the prisons.

I was sleeping at 3:30 in the morning with my girlfriend. I live in the 10th floor of a 10 floor building and i woke up with a little shake. Then it was growing in intensity, and growing and growing. I get to the door and stay there. I have a lot of confidence in the strength of the building I live in, because nothing happend in 1985, the year we experienced another bad earthquake, and my building was built in the 70s. Chile has a really good earthquake standard for buildings.

So after 3 minutes or something like that, I walked out to the street and there was no light. Everyone in my building was good, afraid but good. I stayed like 4 hours down there listening to the radio, finding out what was going on.

12 hours later I don't now whats going on with the most damaged areas. The roads are cut, and this Monday was the day everyone is scheduled to go back to school.

Universities and businesses have been closed, a lot of people are on vacation, so the authorities are moving everything to the following week.

In the most damaged areas, there are buildings on the floor, houses constructed with lightweight material destroyed, and hospitals with a lot of damaged people.

I saw a picture of the museum of contemporary art and it is really damaged. The airport is not working and on TV they show that everything was on the floor. All the airplanes are detoured to argentina or peru. The old buildings are damaged, and some of the new ones, but in general, Santiago is okay.

One of the the strange things about this earthquake is that almost 80% of the population felt it. The state of emergency is in 5 regions, from the 5th, the metropolitan, and the more damaged ones, Bio-bio and Maule.

I read there was a tsunami alert and one island was striked by a very big wave, but there is no news about tsunamis on continental Chile.

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