Mag 8.2 earthquake off Alaska’s southern coast biggest to hit U.S. in over 50 years

Mag 8.2 earthquake off Alaska’s southern coast biggest to hit U.S. in over 50 years
USGS map; author graphic

[Ed. – The tsunami warning was cancelled some hours ago, and there seems to have been little damage, for which we can be thankful.  Hundreds of aftershocks persist.]

The magnitude 8.2 earthquake was reported about 10:15 p.m. Wednesday, and struck just south of the Alaska Peninsula, nearly 500 miles (804.67 kilometers) southwest of Anchorage. The quake was about 60 miles (96.56 kilometers) offshore and 29 miles (46 kilometers) below the surface of the North Pacific Ocean, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

The Alaska Earthquake Center said on its website that it was the largest quake in the U.S. since a magnitude 8.7 quake in the Aleutians in 1965. A year before that, the magnitude 9.2 Good Friday earthquake devastated parts of Anchorage and other Alaska communities. That quake and ensuing tsunami killed 131 people from Alaska to California.

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“Because this earthquake was so far from the shore — it was basically out in the middle of nowhere and also in places where nobody is really living — then the ability to have strong ground shaking, to damage buildings, to injure people goes to pretty close to zero,” [USGS geologist Peter] Haeussler said.

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