Tsunami warning for BC coast after large Alaska quake

Wednesday, 24 Jan, 2018

A 7.9 quake off the coast of Alaska triggered a tsunami watch that stretched from Washington to California early Tuesday morning. But people reported on social media that the shaking was felt hundreds of miles away, in Anchorage, the state's largest city, which was not under a tsunami threat.

Kodiak City Manager Mike Tvenge thanked residents for their orderly evacuations and told them to return home safely.

A tsunami warning is in effect in some parts of Alaska and British Columbia, Canada, after a 7.9-magnitude natural disaster struck off Kodiak Island.

Later in the day, US Tsunami Warning Center lifted warnings and watches along the US and Canadian Pacific coast, deeming there was no longer a threat following the powerful quake off Alaska's coast. Most residents of Kodiak, a town of 6,100 people, received the National Weather Service alert on their cell phones and quickly moved to tsunami evacuation points or higher ground.

At 1:03 a.m., APD answered with another alert: "There is no TSUNAMI Warning for the Anchorage area and Vicinity". But when she checked her phone, she saw alerts about the tsunami warning.

A tsunami isn't just one big wave. The first surge from a local source tsunami could arrive in as few as ten minutes, and surges could continue for 12 hours or longer.

"It's our desire to send that information out to all the people who may be vulnerable to a hazard", he said.

"I've been Kodiak for 19 years that was the strongest, longest lasting one I've ever felt", he told The Associated Press.

A powerful undersea natural disaster sent Alaskans fumbling for suitcases and racing to evacuation centers in the middle of the night after a cellphone alert warned a tsunami could hit communities along the state's southern coast and parts of British Columbia.

"Most of the aftershocks seem to be in the magnitude 4.0 range", Abreu said, adding that "this area of Alaska has seen many earthquakes". "The intent is not to scare people or make people evacuate unnecessarily, but we definitely want to err on the side of saving lives".

She said the centre was packed with up to 400 people, most of whom were either visiting Tofino, which is one of B.C.'s most popular tourist destinations, or residents living near the beach.

March 11, 2011: Although not almost as destructive as the 1964 tsunami, a magnitude-9.0 natural disaster in the Tohoku region of Japan led strong tsunami currents that damaged harbors along California's coast.

According to Kodiak police, officials had reported water receding from the harbour.

There were no immediate reports of damage. It is safe to return to coastal areas.' City says school will happen today.

He added the aftershocks could be as powerful as a magnitude five, which is considered a "moderately strong" natural disaster.