Santiago, March 5, 2010—VALLE NEVADO, CHILE—On the morning of Saturday, Feb. 27, Chile experienced an 8.8-level earthquake that struck just off the coast near the cities Concepcion, Talcahuano, and Constitucion, among many other towns and villages south of Santiago. Santiago, located 310 miles north of the epicenter, suffered damage to some buildings, many of which were older structures located principally in the city’s downtown.
Fortunately, Valle Nevado and the road that connects the resort to Santiago were not affected. Following an exhaustive inspection engineers found only a few minor surface damages at Valle’s hotels and buildings. The Santiago area, while impacted by the quake, experienced minor damage compared to the areas near the epicenter, and things are quickly returning to normal. Power and telecommunications have been nearly completely restored, and supermarkets, gas stations, restaurants and shopping malls are opening today. The Santiago airport is operating again and should resume normal schedules by early next week.
According to Turismo Chile, the country’s tourism infrastructure has, overall, fared well, reporting little damage. Chile has a history of seismic activity and the country therefore has strict building codes; outside of the Concepcion and Maule regions there was relatively minor damage considering the force of the quake. The international media has not distinguished well the regions of Chile affected, as the major damages have taken place 5 hours south of Santiago where, sadly, there were many deaths and displaced families. However, given its strong economy and fiscal discipline Chile has a tremendous revenue surplus to provide needed assistance. Chile is a modern country with a strong infrastructure, first-rate hospitals and emergency services, all of which have been credited for managing the situation and helping to minimize the damage.
“We can’t express enough our sadness for those who have suffered during this episode, says Valle Nevado General Manager Ricardo Margulis, “and we send our sincerest sympathies to those who have been affected the greatest in the southern regions of Chile.”
To keep informed or for questions, travelers and travel agencies can contact firstname.lastname@example.org, however Valle Nevado would like to reiterate that all services are operating normally and the resort will continue to open as planned on June 11. To reach the reservations department, please contact email@example.com or call +(56 2) 477-7705. Valle Nevado is offering North American skiers and riders 15% off 7-night package stays if booked and paid before April 15, 2010.