RALEIGH --The US Embassy in Chile is working to learn the whereabouts of US citizens. No US casualties have been reported but Chilean natives are still concerned about loved ones. Natives in the triangle are glued to the TV looking for updates and checking in with family and friends.
"My dad said that it was like a terror movie, that it was three minutes that the house was shaking from side to side, NC State Student and Chilean Native Constanza Miranda said. "Actually, all the furniture came down."
Miranda and boyfriend Joaquin Baranao have been glued to the TV and internet, absorbing every update coming out of their home country.
The Santiago natives got a scary wakeup call in the morning after the quake.
"A friend from the graduate program just called me and said there was a huge earthquake in Chile, some structures collapsed, it was huge, it was bigger than the one in 1985," Miranda said.
"She said, or at least what I heard was this famous building which is being built now, it collapsed, what I thought was, if that building collapsed, then there is really a huge mess," Baranao said. "Probably my family died, this is what I thought the very first minute."
"We couldn't get in touch family, we were calling all the morning and it was impossible, all the networks were down," Miranda said.
Miranda and Baranao found out through Facebook that both of their friends and family had survived.
"Some friends told us also that the traffic lights would explode," Miranda said.
Miranda has seen some powerful earthquakes in Chile. She says quakes hit Chile often so the country is prepared for them. Miranda says that's why buildings are made to withstand powerful tremors.
"What was amazing is that some roads collapsed and that is kind of never happened before," Miranda said.
Pictures coming out of Chile show there is some significant damage to the country.
"We have some people in the countryside that live in houses built with mud, that they fell down so these are the people that are suffering," Miranda said.