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Strong earthquake rocks Mexican Pacific
November 1, 2011
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A magnitude-6.5 quake was centered 206 miles (333 kilometers) south-southeast of Cabo San Lucas and 141 miles (227 kilometers) from Socorro Island.

A magnitude-6 earthquake rocked the coasts Tuesday of the Mexican Pacific states of Jalisco and Nayarit, but no injuries or damage have been reported, the National Seismology Service said.

The earthquake occurred at 6:32 a.m. at a depth of eight kilometers (4.9 miles), with the epicenter located in the Revillagigedo Islands, an uninhabited archipelago and nature preserve, the National Seismology Service, operated by the National Autonomous University of Mexico, or UNAM, said.

The last powerful quake to hit the area occurred in October 2010, when a magnitude-6.5 temblor rocked La Paz, a city in Baja California Sur state, without causing any damage.

Tuesday's earthquake hit in an area near the border of the Pacific and Cocos plates.

Mexico, one of the countries with the highest levels of seismic activity in the world, sits on the North American tectonic plate and is surrounded by three other plates in the Pacific: the Rivera microplate, at the mouth of the Gulf of California; the Pacific plate; and the Cocos plate.

That last tectonic plate stretches from Colima state south and has the potential to cause the most damage since it affects Mexico City, which has a population of more than 20 million and was constructed over what was once Lake Texcoco.

The magnitude-8.1 earthquake that hit Mexico City on Sept. 19, 1985, was the most destructive to ever hit Mexico, killing some 10,000 people, injuring more than 40,000 others and leaving 80,000 people homeless.

+ Wexico

The most recent powerful quake to hit Mexico was a magnitude-7.6 temblor that rocked Colima on Jan. 21, 2003.

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