Peru rescues man trapped in mine after 7.0 quake, no deaths

LIMA Thu Sep 26, 2013 12:29am EDT

LIMA (Reuters) - Authorities in Peru said they rescued a man trapped in a mine on Wednesday after a 7.0-magnitude earthquake shook the coast - causing landslides, damaging homes and schools and injuring at least 17 in rural provinces.

The man had suffered multiple traumatic injuries and was being treated, said a preliminary report published online late on Wednesday by Peru's civil defense institute.

The report mentioned no deaths resulting from the quake, which the U.S. Geological Society said was a magnitude 7.0.

Earlier on Wednesday local officials said three people died after collapses occurred in make-shift mines, which operate largely outside of the law. Those deaths were not confirmed.

At least seven people were injured at various small mining sites in Peru's southern region, the civil defense report said.

The quake, which struck near Peru's southern coast a few minutes before midday on Wednesday, damaged at least 70 homes and schools, the report said.

"Houses have fallen. Walls have fallen, especially those made out of adobe," Caraveli Mayor Santiago Neyra told RPP radio.

Monitoring of damage and injuries in the region was ongoing late Wednesday night.

Large-scale mining operations in the region - at Southern Copper's Toquepala mine, Freeport-McMoRan's Cerro Verde mine, and Shougang Hierro Peru's iron-ore mine - carried on as usual after the quake, union leaders and a company representative told Reuters.

The quake struck 29 miles deep in the Pacific Ocean, 29 miles south of the district of Acari in the southern Arequipa region, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

Peruvian authorities did not issue any tsunami alerts.

The quake shook buildings in the capital of Lima 313 miles away.

Onemi, Chile's national emergency service, said the quake was also felt in northern Chile, but no damage was reported.

(Reporting by Mitra Taj, Marco Aquino and Patricia Velez; Additional reporting by Rosalba O'Brien in Santiago and Miguel Zegarra in Arequipa; Editing by Christopher Wilson, Stacey Joyce, Leslie Gevirtz and Lisa Shumaker)

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