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7.9 earthquake reported in Gulf of Alaska, prompts West Coast tsunami watch

A magnitude 7.9 earthquake off the coast of Alaska early Tuesday morning triggering a tsunami watch for the entire We...

Posted: Jan 23, 2018 7:11 PM
Updated: Jan 23, 2018 7:11 PM

A magnitude 7.9 earthquake off the coast of Alaska early Tuesday morning triggering a tsunami watch for the entire West Coast.

The quake was recorded at about 12:30 a.m. local time about 175 miles southeast of Kodiak Island. It was initially measured at magnitude 8.2, but downgraded a short time later.

People reported on social media that the quake was felt hundreds of miles away in Anchorage.

National Weather Service warnings were sent to cellphones in Alaska saying: "Emergency Alert. Tsunami danger on the coast. Go to high ground or move inland."

Officials in Kodiak warned residents in the immediate areas to evacuate and seek higher ground. The tsunami warning was issued for parts of coastal Alaska and British Columbia, Canada.

Meanwhile, a tsunami watch took effect for Washington, Oregon and California. A tsunami watch urges residents to prepare to evacuate if needed, but notes that nothing is imminent. The San Francisco Department of Emergency Management warned residents within three blocks of the Pacific Coast or within five blocks of the San Francisco Bay to prepare to evacuate, "so that you are ready if evacuation is needed," the agency tweeted.

A tsunami watch urges residents to prepare to evacuate if needed, but notes that nothing is imminent.

At about 3:20 a.m. local time, the tsunami watch was canceled for California and the rest of the West Coast. The National Tsunami Center canceled the tsunami warning, but an advisory was still in place.

All alerts were canceled by 5 a.m. local time.

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