Canadian government donates school supplies

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More than 320 rucksacks filled with all the necessary articles to begin the school year were delivered by the Honorary Councillor of Canada to the E-492 Libertad school in Hualpén.

The rucksacks were donated by the Canadian government and were filled with notebooks, colored pencils, rulers, scissors, books and other articles that will allow the 320 pupils from pre-school up to eighth grade to study, despite the serious economic problems that has affect many of his families after the February 27th earthquake.

The Honorary Councillor in Concepcion, Ramiro Trucco, delivered this donation, worth more than US$6,000, to the school as they were celebrating the beginning of the academic year.

Editor Notes: 8.8 Earthquake Rocks Santiago Feb. 27th 2010 - At 3:34am local time Saturday morning a magnitude-8.8 earthquake ripped through Chile, toppling building and killing at least 122 people. In Santiago, the capital, there were widespread blackouts and damages to many buildings.

The Earthquake struck 56 miles (90 km) northeast of the city of Concepcion at a depth of 22 miles (35 km). The quake was felt as far away as Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Conception, Chile's second-largest city, looks to be the worst-hit with many building collapsed. People are still being pulled from the rubble.

In the capital there was widespread panic as the earthquake struck, and went on for over 90 seconds. People fled to the street in fear with many of them choosing to spend the night out there in fear that another earthquake would strike. There have been over 41 aftershocks recorded, ranging from 4.9 to 6.9 in magnitude.

Now in daylight people are able to survey the damage. Most shops are closed, with the few supermarkets that are open filling with people trying to buy emergency supplies lest another quake should hit. Windows have been shattered and many building have received minor damage.

Internet and power has been restored to the most of the capital, however many phone services are either still down or working on limited service. The International Airport in Santiago has been closed for at least the next 24 hours.

There has been a Tsunami warning issued for the Pacific, including for Japan, Hawaii, New Zealand and Australia.

The downtown area Concepcion, in the Bio-Bio region, the epicenter of Saturday's earthquake with 8.8 magnitude, has been reduced to ruins with most residents choosing to remain outdoors due to aftershocks.

Many residents chose to stay on the hills in a city park after the country issued warnings against tsunamis. There is no drinking water or food in the city and public transport has been severely interrupted.

Military personnel have been seen in addition to the local police force patrolling the streets of the city, which is located 500 km away from Santiago.

The major roadways linking Santiago and Concepcion were badly damaged by Saturday's quake, with several bridges being impassable, many areas with rock slides and several overturned vehicles blocking routes.

There have currently been over 65 aftershocks recorded by the U.S. Geological Survey many of these between 5.0 and 6.0. A recent aftershock measured 5.6 and was located 65km (40miles) north of Conception, 369km (230miles) SSW of Santiago

Chile is an earthquake prone country. Of the world's recorded 12 strongest quakes measuring over 8.6 on the Richter scale, four occurred in Chile including the world's strongest ever in 1960 when a magnitude 10 earthquake killed at least 1,655 people with the temblor and an ensuing tsunami.

President Michele Bachelet declared a "state of catastrophe." Buildings collapsed and phone lines and electricity were down, making the extent of the damage difficult to determine.

The epicenter was 70 miles from Concepcion, Chile's second-largest city, where more than 200,000 people live.

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