Magnitude 7.8 earthquake hits Alaska isles

An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 7.8 struck the Alaska isles late Tuesday.

The earthquake, which hit about 65 miles south southeast of Perryville, Alaska, struck at 10:12 p.m. local time. It was considered shallow at slightly more than 17 miles, according to the US Geological Survey (USGS)

The quake sparked a tsunami warning for south Alaska and the Alaskan Peninsula, but the warning, as well as other advisories, were canceled later Wednesday morning, CNN reported. A wave of less than a foot was reported to have hit the state in Sand Point, The Associated Press reported

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Kodiak Police Sgt. Mike Sorter said early Wednesday that there were “no reports of any damage,” according to the AP. Kodiak is about 200 miles northeast of where the earthquake hit.

“No injuries were reported. Everything is nominal,” he said.

Small towns within 100 miles of the earthquake experienced strong shaking, and those near Anchorage — which is more than 500 miles away — reported some shaking, according to Michael West, an Alaska state seismologist. 

The earthquake caused several people who live near the coast to evacuate to higher ground in anticipation of a potential tsunami as sirens blasted.

Thrust earthquakes that reach high magnitudes and are categorized as shallow are more likely to produce tsunamis, with those between 7.6 and 7.8 having the potential to formulate “destructive tsunamis,” according to the USGS

CNN meteorologist Pedram Javaheri reported at least 11 aftershocks have occurred, reaching magnitudes of between 3.9 and 6.1.