4.9 magnitude earthquake shakes Atacama region

SANTIAGO — An earthquake of 4.9 magnitude was recorded in the region of Atacama on Sunday.

According to the National Seismological Center (CSN), the earthquake was perceived at 13:21:12 hours with a magnitude of 4.9, in 58 kilometers northwest of Huasco. The depth was 34.2 kilometers.

In addition, the National Emergency Office (Onemi) reported that the intensity of this earthquake was of III degrees in the Mercalli scale in Copiapo, Tierra Amarilla, Coquimbo and La Serena.

Chile is in a quake-prone region, lying on the so-called Pacific Ring of Fire of frequent seismic activity.

Last year, on the Christmas, a 7.7 degrees earthquake affected five regions in southern Chile but left no fatal casualties.

The last big quake to shake Chile was in September 2015, when an 8.3 temblor followed by a tsunami hit the north of the country, killing 15 people. A coastal evacuation order had limited the number of casualties.

The quake struck as Chileans were with their families celebrating Christmas. All shops were closed.

In 2010 another quake measuring 8.8, also followed by a tsunami, struck the center and south of the country, killing more than 500 people.