The chopper was carrying Interior Minister Alfonso Navarrete and Oaxaca state Governor Alejandro Murat, who were unharmed, President Enrique Pena Nieto said.“Unfortunately, multiple people on the ground lost their lives and others were injured,” he wrote on Twitter late Friday.On Saturday the Oaxaca prosecutor’s office said five women, four men, and three children were killed by the helicopter, while another victim died en route to hospital.
Both Mexico’s National Seismological Service and the US Geological Survey put the quake’s magnitude at 7.2.
It struck at 5:39 pm (2339 GMT) at a relatively deep 24.7 kilometers, said the USGS.
– Panic and flashbacks –
The earthquake came less than six months after two quakes killed hundreds of people in the country.
On September 7, an 8.2-magnitude earthquake shook the nation and killed 96 people, mostly in the states of Oaxaca and Chiapas.
Then on September 19 — the 32nd anniversary of a 1985 quake that killed 10,000 — a 7.1-magnitude quake hit the country, leaving 369 people dead.
Friday’s quake triggered Mexico City’s alarm system and caused buildings to sway in the capital. It was also felt in the states of Guerrero, Puebla and Michoacan.
Panicked residents flooded the streets, fearing a repeat of last September’s deadly quakes.
“To be honest, we’re all pretty upset. We start crying whenever the (earthquake) alarm goes off,” 38-year-old publicist Kevin Valladolid told AFP through tears after fleeing his building in La Roma, in central Mexico City.