Earthquake Causes Serious Damage in Alaska

A map locating Anchorage Alaska

A map locating Anchorage Alaska

A powerful 7.0 natural disaster followed by a swarm of strong aftershocks rocked southern Alaska on Friday morning, cracking or collapsing several roads in Anchorage, flinging items off their shelves and sending students and professionals for cover beneath their desks.

The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake was centered about 7 miles north of the city, which is the largest in Alaska.

A photo snapped by a reporter for CBS-affiliate KTVA-TV showed extensive damage to their newsroom.

The Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport remained open, but arrivals and departure ramps were closed and there were reports of road damage, the airport said on Twitter.

At Chugiak High School, acting principal Allison Susel said ceiling tiles came down, books and other items fell from shelves, and water line breaks caused damage.

Senior center technician Michael Burgy says gauges are being monitored to determine if any underwater landslides have generated tsunami waves.

A 7.0-magnitude quake has struck about 12 kilometres north of Anchorage, triggering a tsunami warning for some coastal areas of Alaska.

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Police in the Kodiak Island community told residents to head to higher ground because of the tsunami threat.

West said damage reports across the region were beginning to arrive at the Alaska Earthquake Information Center. The main quake was followed by aftershocks in the range of magnitude 4 to 5.8.

Around 300,000 people live in Anchorage with 100,000 in the surrounding area.

A magnitude 7.0 quake hit Anchorage, Alaska on Friday, triggering a terrifying tsunami warning.

"It was anarchy", said one local man to AP of the quake.

Traffic lights were knocked down and many homes left without power. "Everything that's not tied down broke".

Alaska has more earthquakes than any other state, largely due to the fact that the southeastern part of the state lies on a subduction zone, a geographic area in which one tectonic plate slides underneath another.

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