Earthquake in Chile
14 November 2007

Situation Reports



14 November

A magnitude 7.7 MW earthquake struck Antofagasta, Chile on November 14 at 12:43 local time. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) reports that the epicenter was nearly 38 miles beneath the surface. The event was felt as far as the capital, Santiago, nearly 780 miles south of the epicenter. Several aftershocks have followed the initial earthquake. The areas most affected are Tocopilla and Maria Elena. In Tocopilla there have been two confirmed deaths and there are approximately 110 injured who are being attended by personal from the Tocopilla Hospital and by additional personnel from the Antofagasta Hospital. However, the Department for Emergencies and Disasters within the Ministry of Health reports that the Tocopilla Hospital has structural damage in the third and fourth floors that left if out of commission; it will have to be demolished. As a result, the Chilean Air Force (FACH) will install a field hospital in order to help meet the needs of those seeking care. Patients are being evaluated in order to determine whether they should be transferred to other health centers within the region. Control measures are taking place in Tocopilla in order to ensure safe water to the affected population due to multiple collapses in the water system. In addition, recommendations are being made to the affected population in regard to waste management, vector control and epidemiological surveillance. Shelters are being installed to house the affected population giving special attention to health and sanitary needs. The Ministry of Health is prepared to mobilize specialized personnel and medical aid to address any needs by the Health Authority and Health Services in Antofagasta.

PAHO/WHO Office in Chile (information in Spanish)

PAHO/WHO Subregional Disaster Office for South America


Humanitarian Supply Management and Logistics in the Health Sector

WHO-PAHO Guidelines for the Use of Foreign Field Hospitals in the Aftermath of Sudden-Impact Disasters

Virtual Health Library for Disasters