On Thursday Hurricane Otto hit the southeastern coast of Nicaragua arriving just before a powerful earthquake off El Salvador’s Pacific coast shook the region and sparked warnings of a possible tsunami.
Otto, the seventh Atlantic hurricane of the season, landed north of the town of San Juan de Nicaragua, the Miami-based National Hurricane Center said. The Category 2 hurricane was blowing 110 mph (177 kph) winds when it hit, on the cusp of Category 3.
Soon after, a 7.0 magnitude quake struck 149 km (93 miles) south-southwest of Puerto Triunfo, El Salvador at a depth of 10.3 km (6.4 miles), the US Geological Survey said. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said tsunami waves up to one meter (3.3 feet) were possible on the coasts of El Salvador and Nicaragua.
There were no immediate reports of damage from the quake in El Salvador, but local emergency services ordered the coastal population to withdraw up to 1 km (0.6 mile) from the shoreline.
Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega declared a state of emergency because of the storm and the quake, his spokeswoman and wife, Rosario Murillo, announced.