A 7.8-magnitude earthquake on the southern coast of Alaska on Tuesday night shook the Alaska Peninsula and raised brief concerns about the tsunami before officials said there would be no destructive waves.
The earthquake hit the Pacific Ocean on the Alaska Peninsula, about 60 miles southeast of the Pacific Ocean, and struck at about 10:12 p.m. Local time (2:12 pm Wednesday ET). The Alaska Peninsula extends from mainland Alaska and is flanked to the southwest by the Aleutian Islands.
Reports of ay significant damage were not immediately available. Initially, Southern Alaska and the Alaska Peninsula were issued with the tsunami, then it was canceled early, according to the sources.
The Anchorage Daily News reported that the warning sent people to cities such as Sand Point, an island community of about 1,000 people on the peninsula.
At Sand Point, people gathered at a high school since midnight, when authorities stepped forward, Jordan Keller, an administrator of the city, told the newspaper.
“There was nothing special in the first wave,” Keller, who was in contact with Sand Point staff, told the Anchorage Daily News. Keller told the newspaper that there were no reports of major structural damage on the island.
According to CNN affiliate KTUU, the National Tsunami Warning Center director James Gridley said, “We have canceled the warning (of the tsunami) because it does not appear to be turning into a big or big wave.”
The USGS said strong tremors were reported on the peninsula. According to the USGS, mild to weak shocks were reported around Kodiak, about 300 miles north-east of the earthquake center, and about 530 miles from the center in Anchorage.
A long queue of cars climbed a mountain after residents came to know about the tsunami warning Tuesday night in Kodiak, a city of about 6,000 people, John Kennon told KTUU.
He said that the police is trying to evacuate the low lying areas of the port.
“The tsunami can be heard. It’s quite strange,” he told KTUU.
The depth of this earthquake was 28 kilometers or 17 miles, the USGS said, relatively shallow.
“Anything below 70 kilometers is considered a shallow earthquake,” said CNN meteorologist Alison Chinchahar. “This is important, because surface earthquakes often do the most damage, regardless of force, compared to deep ones.”
More than 20 aftershocks struck the earthquake on Tuesday afternoon with a magnitude of 2.8 to 6.1 in the early hours of Wednesday.
According to the center, about 25,000 earthquakes have been recorded in Alaska since January 1.