Life was slowly returning to some degree of normality on Tuesday (August 28) in the 67 towns and villages ravaged by Mexico's worst-ever earthquake, in which an estimate 700 lost their lives.
GV Pan form vulture to damaged house in Orizaba (2 shots)
CU Zoom out photos of married couples Rescue holding picture and onlookers
GV collapsed apartment building
SV cars under debris of wrecked showroom (2 shots)
GV side of wrecked tall building
SV Villagers looking
GV Church and hospital wrecked, and damaged belfry (4 shots)
GV wrecked technical school
Travel shots: through streets of Rio Blanco, seeing damage to dwellings
GV main street, man walking along with load on back
GV villagers clearing belongings from wreckage
GV woman collecting belongings from debris
SV people queuing for inoculations
SV men passing packages in chain from truck
CU pan women drinking and smiling
CU smiling and laughing children
Initials AE/12.55 AE/1.47
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Life was slowly returning to some degree of normality on Tuesday (August 28) in the 67 towns and villages ravaged by Mexico's worst-ever earthquake, in which an estimate 700 lost their lives.
Some of the worst-hit towns were in hilly regions like Veracruz, where landslides cut off roads. Bulldozers are being used to open up the trails again, and army helicopters are ferrying food and medical supplies to some 60,000 isolated villagers.
Life was made double difficult for survivors in the strickened areas when torrential rainstorms followed in the path of the earth-quake.
On Friday (August 31), Mexican President Luis Echeverria politely declined an offer of aid from President Nixon. In a message to Senor Echeverria, President Nixon asked if the Untied States could do anything to alleviate the suffering of the quake victims and their families. While thanking him, President Echeverria said Mexico would use her own resources.
SYNOPSIS: The Vultures hover over the stricken Mexican city of Orizaba, where at least two-hundred people were known to have died in Tuesday's earthquake. Ten died when this new apartment block collapsed without warning, given no warning to escape to safety. Amongst the victims was the bride shown in this shattered wedding photograph.
Beneath the apartment building was a new car agency. Most of the vehicles were crushed flat with the force of the impact. So bad was the quake damage in Orizaba that villagers hardly knew where to begin when starting the big clear-up.
Orizaba's main cathedral and adjoining hospital were destroyed for all practical purposes. The belfry of the church was jolted precariously askew, and there were fears it could topple at any time.
A few blocks away, a new technical college, built only three years ago, will have to be completely reconstructed.
Getting life back to normal will not be an easy task for townsfolk of Orizabe...not indeed for their neighbours in the village of Rio Blanco, a few miles away. The houses offered little resistance to the mighty power of the tremor, having been fashioned from the cheapest of materials. In all, seven hundred people are believed to have lost their lives in the affected areas in the state of Vera Cruz.
Nevertheless, when this film was shot, just a day-and-a-half after the quake, definite signs of recovery were in evidence. Life must go on, and villagers sat about sorting through the rubble of their homes for anything salvageable.
Main fear of the authorities was an outbreak of disease following the desolation of the earthquake. Medical supplies were rushed by helicopter to strickened areas of inoculations could start immediately. President Nixon offered help from the Untied States, but was politely turned down by Mexico's President Echeverria, who said Mexico would recover under her own resources....
A sentiment echoed by the women and children of earthquake-shattered Orizaba.