Magnitude 7.3 quake hits northern Venezuela coast

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(Reuters) – A major earthquake of magnitude 7.3 struck the northern coast of Venezuela on Tuesday, the U.S. Geological Survey said, and shook buildings as far away as the capital, Caracas, witnesses said.

The quake, initially reported as a magnitude 6.7 and then 7.0, was centered near the town of Carupano.

The U.S. Pacific Tsunami Center said the quake, which was fairly deep, could cause small tsunami waves along the coast near the epicenter, 23 miles (37 km) southwest of the town of Carupano.

A magnitude 7.3 quake is considered major and is capable of causing widespread, heavy damage, but the quake was 76.5 miles (123.11 km) deep, which would have dampened the shaking.

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