Alaska hit by over 230 aftershocks after massive natural disaster

Marsha Scott
December 3, 2018

A powerful natural disaster shook southern Alaska on Friday morning, buckling roads, disrupting traffic and jamming telephone lines in and around Anchorage, the state's largest city, but there were no reports of injuries. No tsunami arrived and there were no immediate reports of deaths or serious injuries. Authorities have instructed people to seek high ground.

More than 230 aftershocks have hit parts of Alaska since on Friday when a massive 7.0-magnitude quake knocked out power, ripped open roads and damaged buildings near Anchorage, the US Geological Survey (USGS) said.

President Donald Trump declared a federal emergency, ordering USA government assistance in the quake response and authorizing the Federal Emergency Management Agency to coordinate all disaster relief efforts, the White House said. Trump is in Argentina at the Group of 20 summit.

Alaska state seismologist Mike West said Friday's natural disaster was the "most significant" to strike Anchorage since a 9.2-magnitute quake in 1964 that killed 129 people-the most powerful ever recorded in the U.S.

A lawyer working and living in Anchorage, Hank Graper, said he was driving when the quake struck.

Infrastructure in and around Anchorage took a major hit, police said on Twitter, with some homes and other buildings heavily damaged and many roads and bridges forced closed.

Photographs from social media showed damage to schools and roads and one image showed a auto stranded on an island of pavement, as the quake had split the road.

Slaton ran into his son's room after the shaking stopped.

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According to Earthquakes Canada, the quake struck about 22 kilometres east-southeast of Fort St. John just before 5:30 p.m. Slaton put the fish in a bowl. There's no pictures left on the walls, there's no power, there's no fish tank left.

"People who were outside were actively hugging each other", he said.

Alaska averages 40,000 earthquakes every year, with more large quakes than the other 49 states combined.

Alaska is no stranger to earthquakes, with its southeastern coastline sitting on the edge of the Pacific and North American tectonic plates. "Everything that's not tied down is broke".

This photo provided by David Harper shows merchandise that fell off the shelves during the quake.

The 7.0 quake was felt up to 400 miles outside of Anchorage, said Michael West, the Alaska state seismologist.

"I only thought of one thing: + I want it to stop +", said one of them. It had lasted several minutes and caused a destructive tidal wave across the entire West Coast, totaling some 130 casualties.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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