6.3-magnitude earthquake hits Mexico, killing 75-year-old woman

OAXACA, Mexico (AFP) - A 6.3-magnitude earthquake rattled Mexico on Tuesday, killing an elderly woman who fell as she fled her home and injuring another woman who evacuated from a hospital.

The epicenter was in the east coast of Veracruz, where residents and tourists fled homes and hotels.

Authorities found no damage after reviewing the Laguna Verde nuclear power plant and oil installations in the Gulf of Mexico coast.

But the earthquake claimed one life in the neighboring southern state of Oaxaca.

A 75-year-old woman died after she fell and knocked her head on the floor when she was fleeing her home in the city of Oaxaca, said civil protection director Felipe Reyna Romero.

Another woman broke her arm after falling while carrying a child as she fled a hospital in Oaxaca, Reyna Romero said.

Walls and ceilings crumbled in the Oaxaca state cities of Tuxtepec and Loma Bonita, near the epicenter of the quake. Some hotels were evacuated in the city of Oaxaca, the state's namesake.

An explosion was reported in a mine further south in San Jose del Progreso but workers were safely evacuated, Reyna Romero said.

The US Geological Survey said the quake took place at 5:46 am (1046 GMT) in Veracruz, at a depth of 95km and 19km south-west of the municipality of Juan Rodriguez Clara.

The quake's epicenter was 418 kilometers southeast of Mexico City, rattling buildings and prompting residents to evacuate their homes after they were roused out of their beds.

Mexico City Mayor Miguel Angel Mancera said authorities reviewed the metropolis of 20 million people and found no damage or injuries.

Rosalinda Gonzalez, a 38-year-old secretary, fled from her apartment in her pajamas in downtown Mexico City.

"My daughter began to cry and when I got up I saw that it was shaking because her crib's mobile was moving by itself," she said.

Mexico is one of the most seismically active places in the world, sitting atop five tectonic plates, including three major ones.

Mexico City is sensitive to distant earthquakes because it was built over soft soil from a drained lake that magnifies their effect.

In 1985, thousands of people were killed in the capital when buildings collapsed after an 8.1-magnitude quake struck the Pacific coast.