Powerful Pacific quake felt in much of Guanacaste

A 7.3 magnitude quake off the coast of Nicaragua Monday night was strong enough to shake up the monitoring instruments in Costa Rica.

The Laboratorio de Ingeniería Sísmica originally reported that the epicenter was off the coast of Tamarindo in north Pacific Costa Rica.

The U.S. Geological Survey said that the quake near the border with El Salvador occurred as the result of normal faulting in the Central America subduction zone. At the latitude of this event, the Cocos plate is converging with the Caribbean plate at a rate of roughly 73 millimeters a year in an east-northeast direction, it said, adding that the approximate depth of the subducted Cocos plate at the location of the earthquake is 50 kilomerters.

The Survey said the epicenter was 67 kilometers west southwest of  Jiquilillo, Nicaragua, and that the quake took place at 9:51:35 p.m.

The was a second quake of magnitude 5.0 at 10:01:32 p.m., said the Survey. That epicenter was 90 kilometers west southwest of  Jiquilillo, it said.

The 7.3 quake was felt moderately in Guanacaste, said the Laboratorio. Wilfredo Salgado, mayor of the city of San Miguel in El Salvador, said a man was killed when an electrical pole collapsed and fell on him, azccording to wire servicie reports.

There were no other reports of  fatalities.

Also at 9:31:11 p.m. there was a 4.5 magnitude quake off the coast of Quepos in the central Pacific, said the Laboratorio.

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