Mexico Quake Tops 7.4, Spares Lives

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Many in Mexico are grateful to be alive Wednesday after a massive 7.4 earthquake shook central Mexico the day before, injuring at least 11 people and damaging hundreds of homes.

The epicenter of the quake occurred between two popular spring break destinations for college students.

Thousands of American tourists were in the quake zone in the area known as Guerrero state. Among them was President Barack Obama's oldest daughter, Malia,who is on vacation with her friends in Oaxaca in southwestern Mexico.

The White House said the 13-year-old Malia is safe and sound.

"In light of today's earthquake, we can confirm that Malia Obama is safe and was never in danger," First lady Michelle Obama's communications director Kristina Schake said in a written statement released Wednesday.

The earthquake shook the region around 12 noon CST. One woman described it as a drop and then uncontrollable shaking.

People evacuated into the streets and then stayed there, afraid to go back into their places of work as the aftershocks began.

"We were on the 20th floor. Everything started shaking, and the windows were shaking. And I sat in the floor. It was scary. I never felt anything like that before," one person said.

The powerful quake was felt up to 100 miles away.

No deaths are being reported, but officials say hundreds of homes were destroyed. Several bridges also collapsed, including one that crushed a truck.

Experts say the quake struck at a shallow depth, making the shaking even more intense.

Since 1973, there have been 15 strong earthquakes in the same region as Tuesday's quake. The country of Mexico straddles one of the most active thrust fault lines in the western hemisphere.

The last major quake in the country struck in 1985, killing more than 10,000 people.

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Charlene  Aaron

Charlene Aaron

CBN News Reporter

Charlene Aaron serves as a general assignment reporter and helps anchor for the CBN News Channel.  Follow her on Twitter @CharNews and "like" her at Facebook.com/CharleneIsraelCBNNews.