6.3-magnitude earthquake jolts Colombian capital, buildings evacuated

BOGOTA, Aug 17 (Reuters) – A powerful earthquake measuring 6.3 on the Richter scale struck the Colombian capital Bogota on Thursday, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

Minutes after the initial quake, the city’s streets were flooded with people. Colombia’s National Geological Service rated the second quake at 5.6 on the Richter scale, with the aftershock measuring 4.8.

“It was strong and lasted a long time,” said Adrian Alarcon, 43, who works near the capital’s busy Park 93 district, referring to the first tremor.

“It makes me feel weak,” she added. “Life can change in an instant. There’s nothing you can do but save your life.”

Colombia’s civil protection agency said residents had been evacuated in the entire municipality of Calvario, in Meta, southeast of the highlands capital. Windows in the area were damaged by the earthquake.

In nearby Villavicencio, the agency reported a landslide and said its staff was checking for more damage.

Julia Sims Cope and Oliver Griffin report; Written by Sarah Morland; Editing by David Alire Garcia and Alistair Bell

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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