8.1 magnitude earthquake hits Mexico

MEXICO- The governor of the Mexican state of Chiapas said on Friday that at least three people were killed after a massive 8.1-magnitude earthquake hit off the coast of southern Mexico.

The earthquake toppled houses in Chiapas state, causing buildings to sway violently as far away as the country's distant capital city and setting off a tsunami warning.

The quake was so powerful that frightened residents in Mexico City more than 1,000 kilometres (650 miles) away fled apartment buildings, often in their pajamas, and gathered in groups in the street.

Buildings swayed strongly for more than one minute, loosening light fixtures from ceilings. Helicopters crisscrossed the sky above Mexico City with spotlights. Some neighborhoods kept electricity while others remained in darkness.