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Chile Restores Normal Basic Services After Earthquake

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Chile has surpassed the emergency caused by the earthquake that shook the South American country on Feb. 27, as the basic services have been restored and the food and shelter delivery and health care have been effective at the most affected areas, official sources said on Tuesday.

"We are surpassing the toughest phase of the emergency, we have been able to give water, food and shelter to the thousands of victims affected in the center-south of the territory," Chilean Interior Vice Minister Patricio Rosende told the press.

There are drinking water at all the urban localities in the affected zones, Rosende said. He added that 10.6 million people have normal supplying network, while 589,000 people are receiving the services of water trucks.

Rosende told reporters that the electricity supply has been reestablished in more than 90 percent of the affected localities.

The Housing Ministry recorded that 23,248 buildings are with damages, and 6,378 with considerable damages, Rosende said.

"There will be subsidies for the families to repair their houses. If the damages are irreparable, and the related directions of the municipalities declare the buildings uninhabitable for the families, they could receive a new subsidy," Rosende said.

"I want to thank the citizens, because as it is showed in the opinion poll of the consultancy Adimark, they recognize the efforts done by Chilean President Michele Bachelet and the government during the first days of the emergency," Rosende added.

(Xinhua News Agency March 10, 2010)