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West Australia Goldfields Quake Wrecks Buildings April 23, 2010
Quake Map of Australia
The strongest temblor to rock Western Australia’s Goldfields region in 50 years caused significant damage to homes, schools, hotels and other buildings on Tuesday morning.

Some of the worst damage occurred at several historic hotels in the mining city of Kalgoorlie-Boulder.

Geoscience Australia spokesman Chris Thompson said the shallow 5.2 quake at 8:17 a.m. local time less than 5 miles southwest of the Kalgoorlie city center.

Residents told the Australian Broadcasting Corp. radio they felt the earth shake and feared their homes would fall down around them.

The shaking prompted the operators of the massive Super Pit gold mine to evacuate all of its employees.

“All mines have been evacuated and all miners have been tagged and accounted for,” Australian Workers Union National Secretary Paul Howse told Australia’s Sky television.

A hotel owner said he pulled one of his female employees out of rubble, but she was not seriously injured. One of the two people injured during the quake was a 19-year-old receptionist who was knocked unconscious after the roof above her desk collapsed.

Several sharp aftershocks jolted the area during the hours following the initial jolt, but no additional damage was reported.