30 dead after earthquake rocks Guatemala
By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 7:11 PM EST, Wed November 7, 2012
(CNN) -- A powerful earthquake off the coast of Guatemala on Wednesday sent debris crashing down onto cars, collapsed roads and killed dozens in the Central American nation, officials said.
About 100 people were reported missing, 15 were reported trapped under rubble and the death toll could rise, President Otto Perez Molina said, citing unconfirmed preliminary reports. The country's disaster relief agency said Wednesday that at least 30 people were killed.
Residents felt the 7.4-magnitude quake throughout Central America and as far north as Mexico City. Its epicenter was about 15 miles off of the western coastal town of Champerico, at a depth of 26 miles.
It was the strongest quake to hit Guatemala since 1976, the president told reporters, when a 7.5-magnitude quake killed 23,000 people.
"Fortunately, the damage that we have is not at the same level," Perez Molina said Wednesday.