Mexico earthquake history shows that the same faults that caused Tuesday's Mexico earthquake can produce even bigger events, like one that struck in 1985.
Authorities in Mexico are surveying that damage following a magnitude 7.4 quake that struck the country just after noon on Tuesday local time.
The quake was centered some 31 miles north-northeast of the city of Ometepec, in a mountainous region dotted with villages. The rupture occurred at a depth of about 12 miles, according to estimates from the US Geological Survey's Earthquake Information Center in Golden, Colo.
Given the size of the quake, the population density, the types of buildings in the area, and factors affecting the intensity of shaking, analysts at the center said the quake had the potential to cause up to $100 million in damage and lead to as many as 100 fatalities.
So far, however, no deaths or injuries have been reported. But damage estimates are trickling out from the area. Officials in the town of Igualapa told CNN that more than 800 homes have collapsed. In Ometepec, local officials told the network that roughly half of the homes were heavily damaged.
Shaking from the quake, initially estimated at magnitude 7.9, also was felt in Mexico City, some 200 miles away, sending residents into the streets. According to data from the USGS's “Did You Feel It?” program, people in 14 cities throughout the country and beyond reported that they'd experienced some level of shaking from the temblor. The quake was felt as far away as Guatemala City.