Two strong quakes shake central Colombia, no damage reported

People react after an earthquake in Bogota, Colombia December 24, 2019. REUTERS/Luisa Gonzalez

BOGOTA (Reuters) – Two strong earthquakes, of magnitude 6.2 and magnitude 5.7, struck central Colombia on Tuesday, the Colombian Geological Service said, but there were no immediate reports of any injuries or major damage.

The quakes were very close to each other and only minutes apart. The epicenters were located about 150 km (93 miles) south of the capital Bogota in the central province of Meta, and were very shallow, which would have amplified their effects.

A quake of magnitude 6.2 is considered strong and is capable of causing severe damage however the area is not densely populated.

The U.S. Geological Survey put the magnitudes at 6.0 and 5.8.

The tremors were felt in several cities in the center and southwest of the country, including Bogota.

The region of the epicenters is home to agriculture and oil activities, but the country’s disaster management agency said on its Twitter account it had not yet received any reports of damage.

A spokesperson for state-run oil company Ecopetrol, which has much of its infrastructure in the country’s eastern plains, said all installations were operating normally.

Earthquakes are relatively frequent in Colombia.

Reporting by Oliver Griffin and Nelson Bocanegra; Additional reporting by Sandra Maler in Washington and by Julia Symmes Cobb in Portland; Editing by Alistair Bell and Sandra Maler

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