LIMA, Peru — A powerful earthquake rocked southern Peru on Tuesday, killing 15 people, injuring as many as 700 and causing many buildings to crumble, civil defense officials said.
Hardest hit by the magnitude-6.4 noontime quake was the tourist city of Nazca, where four people were killed and 380 injured, civil defense spokeswoman Lena Montes said.
The Peruvian Geophysical Institute said the quake was centered in the Pacific Ocean about 83 miles west of Nazca, which is 235 miles southeast of Lima.
In two Nazca neighborhoods, half of the homes--many of them adobe--were damaged, officials said.
"It is incredible the need that exists in Nazca now," said Anna Cogorno, a resident of the town of 25,000.
There was no report of damage to the famous Nazca Lines, the huge pre-Columbian etchings on a desert plain.
The quake lasted about a minute and was felt in Lima--where high-tension cables fell across a busy avenue--and as far away as Tacna, 600 miles southeast of the capital.
A mine in the highland community of Santa Rosa, 250 miles southeast of Lima, caved in, civil defense officials said. There were no reports of injuries.