At least one person killed as, powerful earthquake hits northern Peru

A powerful earthquake hit northern Peru, causing power outages and cutting phone service throughout much of the region, killing at least one person, officials said.

Peru's Geophysics Institute said the quake with a preliminary magnitude of 7struck at 8:55 p.m. Sunday (0155 GMT Monday) and was centered about 90 kilometers (56 miles) northeast of the jungle city Moyobamba, 670 kilometers (415 miles) north of the capital Lima.

"Several houses have fallen down and there are several people dead," Carlos Mori, a resident of the jungle town of Lamas, near Moyobamba, told Radioprogramas. "All of the residents of Lamas are in the streets. Most of the people are helping."

Mori said about 20 houses had collapsed and that four people were dead.

But Napoleon Salazar, a regional official in the Department of San Martin, told The Associated Press that "there are nine injured in the hospital and one fatality" in Lamas.

A policeman in Lamas confirmed that only one person was known to have died and told the AP that eight houses were completely destroyed and about 30 others damaged.

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