Mexico City is reeling from the devastation caused by a magnitude 7.1 earthquake on Sept. 19, with 217 reported deaths as of this writing.
The earthquake comes just two weeks after a magnitude 8.1 earthquake hit southern Mexico, the most powerful since the 1985 Mexico City quake that killed 10,000 people.
Communications of relief efforts have come up against infrastructure challenges unique to this type of natural disaster. Much of Mexico City has suffered electricity blackouts and downed cell service, in contrast to Houston, where flood-ready data centers ensured internet and cell service in Hurricane Harvey's wake.
But the service interruptions haven't affected everybody in the area. Citizens, media outlets and government officials with access to power and cell service have taken to Twitter to share evacuation instructions, request supplies, document successful rescues and applaud residents for organizing volunteer efforts.
— Miguel Ángel Mancera (@ManceraMiguelMX) September 20, 2017
— Milenio.com (@Milenio) September 20, 2017
Google has also proven to be a valuable tool by providing quick access to local resources for quake victims and those offering help. Googling “Mexico earthquake” yields several cards: a map of affected areas, the option to check on friends and family members through Google Person Finder or Facebook Safety Check and a link to report building damage via local Mexican authorities.
For those seeking to help quake survivors, Google also provides a direct link to donate to disaster relief organization the Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP), a nonprofit that's leading and communicating relief efforts.
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