Strong earthquake hits Mexico, one dead

OAXACA, Mexico (Reuters) - A strong 6.2-magnitude earthquake struck southern Mexico early on Wednesday, leaving one man dead and shaking buildings as far away as Mexico City but sparing infrastructure from serious damage.

The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake struck near the town of Pinotepa Nacional, around 80 miles southwest of the colonial city of Oaxaca, Police patrols checking surrounding towns did not report fallen buildings.

In the small coastal village of San Andres Huaxpaltepec near the epicenter a falling beam crushed a 46-year-old man as he slept at home, said Luis Zarate, head of the emergency services service in the state of Oaxaca.

“It woke me up, I was scared too,” said Gilberto Mateo, another civil protection official in Oaxaca.

In the historic center of the city of Oaxaca people felt the tremor strongly and several hotels were evacuated briefly.

“It was pretty strong,” said Jorge Cervantes, a security guard at Hotel Las Gaviotas in Pinotepa Nacional. “Some guests went downstairs but the building is fine and nobody is hurt.”

The USGS reported the quake as magnitude 6.5 but later revised the figure to 6.2, also moving the epicenter slightly.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center had no warning or advisory in place and hotels in beach resorts like Puerto Angel also reported no damage.

Tremors awoke residents in Mexico City nearly 300 miles to the north, and cut power in some districts. Some people filed onto the street in their pajamas, but there were no reports of casualties in the city, where many have grim memories of a devastating earthquake in 1985.

Power and phone connections were still working.

Mexico is regularly shaken by tremors and nerves are strained since devastating earthquakes in Haiti and Chile earlier this year.

Additional reporting by Armando Tovar, Pablo Garibian, Cyntia Barrera, Patrick Rucker and Adriana Barrera; Writing by Catherine Bremer; Editing by Alan Elsner and Doina Chiacu