POST TIME: 8 September, 2018 00:00 00 AM
One year on, ‘quake isn’t over’ in Mexico

One year on, ‘quake isn’t over’ in Mexico

This recent photo shows a hotel which was destroyed in last year's September 7 quake in Juchitan de Zaragoza, Oaxaca State, Mexico. AFP photo

VILLAFLORES: One year after an 8.2-magnitude earthquake devastated southern Mexico, the poor, indigenous communities near the epicenter feel forgotten as they struggle to rebuild, reports AFP.

The quake, which hit just before midnight on September 7, 2017, was the most powerful to strike Mexico in a century.

It killed 99 people, damaged more than 100,000 buildings and left the infrastructure crumpled in the poor southern states of Chiapas and Oaxaca —so much that even today, thousands of pupils are still going to class under trees or in improvised temporary schools.

But the quake soon became a footnote when another hit central Mexico on September 19, striking the economic heart of the country and devastating Mexico City.

The second quake — geologically unrelated to the first, according to seismologists — had a smaller magnitude of 7.1, but killed 369 people and caused billions of dollars in damages.

The victims of the September 7 earthquake soon faded to the national background. Many say that is where they remain one year later.

In Juchitan, Oaxaca, one of the towns hit hardest, the ruins of uninhabitable houses still line the streets, residents can still be seen sleeping on the ground and many businesses have still not reopened.

“It seems like a month since the earthquake. You can see how abandoned we are, on every single corner,” said the local writer Jorge Magarino.