8.2 magnitude earthquake hits Alaska, triggering tsunami warnings
A strong and shallow 8.2 magnitude earthquake shook the Alaska Peninsula late Wednesday, sparking tsunami warnings in the US state and increased surveillance in the Pacific.
There were no immediate reports of loss of property or life. Tsunami warning sirens were sounding near a Walmart store in Kodiak, Alaska, a video filmed by a local resident and obtained from Reuters showed.
The U.S. National Tsunami Warning Center (NTWC) issued warnings for southern parts of Alaska, the volcanic peninsula itself, and Pacific coastal areas from the Hinchinbrook entrance to Unimak Pass.
Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy tweeted that the state’s 911 call center had been activated and authorities were contacting communities in tsunami warning areas.
The US Geological Survey (USGS) announced that the quake started at 10:15 p.m. Local time, at a depth of 35 km.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (PTWC) said it had lifted warnings of possible tsunami threats to Hawaii and the U.S. Pacific Territory of Guam.
The NTWC said it is assessing the magnitude of the tsunami threat to other U.S. and Canadian Pacific coastal areas.
The Japanese weather agency is investigating whether Japan would be hit by a tsunami, said the public broadcaster NHK. There were no tsunami warnings on the Japanese Meteorological Agency’s website.
The New Zealand authorities also said they were investigating whether there was a threat to coastal areas.
The quake struck about 91 km east-southeast of Perryville, Alaska. It was approximately 500 miles (800 km) from Anchorage, Alaska’s largest city. The National Weather Service tweeted that there was no tsunami threat to Anchorage.
The USGS added that the quake in the area was followed by eight aftershocks, two of which were over 6.0 magnitude. lay
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