An estimated 7.2-magnitude earthquake centered in Baja California, Mexico, shook buildings as far north as Los Angeles on Sunday afternoon. Seismologists said the quake hit about 108 miles east of the border city of Tijuana.
Early reports from Mexico indicated damage in Mexicali, a border city north of the epicenter. Cesar Garcia, an editor at Channel 12 television in Tijuana, said a two-story parking garage next to the Mexicali government headquarters collapsed, causing several injuries. The government building was also damaged in the city of 653,000, he said.
The local general hospital was evacuated, with patients transferred to other facilities, according to Garcia.
He said the news station had not been able to reach anyone in Guadalupe de Victoria, a town closer to the epicenter where wineries are the main industry.
Baja California state Civil Protection Director Alfredo Escobedo told the Associated Press that one man died when his home collapsed just outside of Mexicali.
In Calexico, across the border from Mexicali, Carlton Hargrave, 64, was standing in the entryway of the Family Style Buffet restaurant when the quake hit. The restaurant, he said in a telephone interview, was "almost completely destroyed. We've got tables overturned, plates broken on the floor."
"The ceilings caved in. It was big, I mean, it was major," he said in a shaky voice.
The earthquake hit at about 3:40 p.m., about 40 miles southeast of Mexicali and 220 miles southeast of Los Angeles. Several major aftershocks have already hit the area, and triggered a 4.1 earthquake six miles southwest of Malibu, Calif., in the Pacific Ocean, according to seismologists.
In Los Angeles, no significant damage or injuries were reported. The Los Angeles Fire Department said it saw a slight increase in 911 calls, mostly associated with automatic alarms and stuck elevators. At the Knotts Berry Farm theme park in Buena Park, rides were shut down for 20 minutes while they were inspected, said Willie Parker, a spokesman for the park. No one was stranded on any of the rides, Parker said.