2 temblors jolt Costa Rica; no initial reports of injuries

February 18, 2015

A strong temblor with a magnitude of 4.8 shook residents in several communities in the northwestern province of Guanacaste at 7:12 a.m. Four hours later, a magnitude-4.9 was registered near the border with Panama, according to the University of Costa Rica’s National Seismological Network (RSN).

The first quake’s epicenter was located 6 kilometers west of Quebrada Honda, in Nicoya, at a depth of 44 kilometers.

RSN received reports from residents who said the quake was felt “very strong” in Nicoya, Santa Cruz, Cañas, Sámara, Nosara, Avellanas, Tamarindo and Monteverde in Puntarenas.

The second was registered at 10:59 a.m. 11 km east of Pittier, in the southern canton of Coto Brus. It also was felt by residents in the Central Valley.

Reports noted it was felt “very strong” in the southern Pacific region of Golfito, San Vito and Boruca, Cuidad Neilly. Central Valley residents reported the temblor as “moderate” in the capital at La Sabana, La Uruca, Desamparados, Hatillo, Montes de Oca, Zapote, Puriscal, Escazú, and also in the provinces of Alajuela, Cartago and Heredia.

The RSN initially stated that no injuries or damage to buildings were reported.

The Volcanological and Seismological Observatory of Costa Rica reported both quakes with magnitudes of 4.8.

A magnitude-7.6 quake struck the Nicoya Peninsula at 8:42 a.m. on Sept. 5 2012, shaking most of the country for some 45 seconds. A 51-year old woman died of a heart attack following the incident, although she was not included in the official quake death toll. The natural disaster caused nearly $45 million in damage.

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