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Mexico: Minister helicopter's crash kills 13 on ground

Mexico: Minister helicopter's crash kills 13 on ground

Officials said the military helicopter had crashed on top of several vans carrying natural disaster survivors in a field while trying to land in the village of Santiago Jamiltepec, not far from the epicentre.

The military helicopter, about 22 miles away from the epicenter of the 7.2 magnitude natural disaster that struck Mexico Friday evening, crashed into two vans and killed 12 people immediately, while an additional person died later at the hospital.

Interior Minister Alfonso Navarrete and Governor Alejandro Murat were not seriously injured, officials said.

The ministry issued a statement on Twitter saying two people on the ground were killed when the helicopter came down. Many buildings left uninhabitable are still awaiting demolition, and people flooded into the streets as the ground seethed Friday.

A powerful magnitude-7.2 natural disaster shook south and central Mexico, causing people to flee swaying buildings and office towers in the country's capital, where residents were still jittery after a deadly quake five months ago.

Officials in affected states said they were inspecting buildings damaged by last year's quakes, which are especially vulnerable to collapse.

"No casualties have been reported, either among the Filipino community or among the Mexican populace", said the embassy, however, some buildings were reported damaged in Mexico City and Oaxaca State.

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Friday's quake triggered Mexico City's alarm system and caused buildings to sway in the capital.

After the tremor, thousands of people were seen fleeing buildings in Mexico City as the ground shook.

Local sources say at least 10 people have been killed and that children and elderly people are among the victims. Oaxaca state felt the worst of the 7.2 magnitude natural disaster.

Two young men standing by a building that collapsed during a 19 September quake were still hugging minutes after the tremor.

Mexican Civil Protection chief Luis Felipe Puente tweeted that there were no immediate reports of deaths directly related to the quake.

The natural disaster was first measured as a 7.5-magnitude and later lowered to having a 7.2-magnitude by the U.S. Geological Survey.

The natural disaster came less than six months after two devastating quakes that killed hundreds of people a year ago.


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