[PHOTOS] 5.2-magnitude quake hits Ponce area
SAN JUAN — The Puerto Rico Seismic Network registered a 5.2-magnitude earthquake Saturday morning that was followed by several aftershocks that caused the collapse of some structures in the south and loss of merchandise in some businesses.
At around 7:13 a.m., the epicenter of the first tremor was registered in the Tallaboa area in Ponce and was felt across the island.
Electric power service outages were reported on social media immediately and the Electric Power Authority reported that the Ecoeléctrica plant had gone out of service, leaving several sectors without power.
Several structures in the historic center of Ponce were damaged, as was merchandise in some businesses.
Meanwhile, Gov. Wanda Vázquez Garced called for calm through her Twitter account and recommended those who are were unstable structures to leave them, all the while wearing a mask as a measure against spreading COVID-19.
She also requested a damage report from the mayors and visited the area.
Although Puerto Rico remains under lockdown and curfew orders, after seismic events, the authorities recommend people follow evacuation guidelines.
Due to location and magnitude, no tsunami warning was issued.
“I know it is difficult, but right now we are asking our residents to calm down. Our priority right now is that our citizens can remain calm and that they can act in the event of another aftershock. We are working as quickly and hastily as possible. We have single mothers, the elderly, people with disabilities and many families who have been affected by this situation since January. And without forgetting the global emergency we are experiencing,” Ponce Mayor María E. Meléndez Altieri said in a statement.
“We are living in difficult times where we have sustained damage to structures. Since Hurricane Maria, we have demonstrated the resilience and courage of the people. But beyond that, the emotional damage [of] ponceños and ponceñas is worrying. Our people are affected, but my message is to check your homes and if they are not damaged, stay there. Apart from this situation, we are also working with the COVID19 crisis and we cannot expose ourselves,” the mayor added.
If your home was damaged, call 787- 840-5353 or 787-840-5350.
CyberNews contributed to this report.