Tsunami warnings canceled after magnitude-7.9 earthquake off Alaska

A magnitude-7.9 earthquake detected in the Gulf of Alaska triggered tsunami warnings in Alaska and tsunami watches across several Western states.

Forecasters canceled tsunami warnings for Alaska and the US and Canadian west coasts “because additional information and analysis have better defined the threat,” said the National Tsunami Warning Center in Palmer, Alaska. Small tsunami waves of less than 1 foot were reported in Alaska, the center said.

The earthquake struck about 175 miles southeast of Kodiak, Alaska, shortly after midnight Alaska local time, according to preliminary figures from the United States Geological Survey. The quake had a depth of about 15 miles, according to the USGS. The earthquake previously had been measured at magnitude 8.2.

Nathaniel Moore was on a boat in Kodiak when the quake hit. He said he felt it “shake really good for a minute.” He and others on the commercial fishing vessel quickly got to shore and headed for higher ground amid the tsunami warning.

“The whole town is evacuating,” he told CNN early Tuesday.

The Kodiak Police Department early Tuesday urged residents to get at least 100 feet above sea level, warning: “This is not a drill.”

Tsunami sirens sounded in Kodiak.

Wendy Bliss Snipes described the quake as “a slow roller, so it was felt for at least a minute before the real rolling started. Nothing fell off the walls, and I didn’t have to wake my kiddo.”

Heather Rand, who was in Anchorage, Alaska, told CNN that the earthquake felt like the longest she had ever experienced.

“It was a very long, slow build up. Creepy, more than anything. Definitely the longest, and I was born here,” Rand said. She reported no damage besides cracks in the drywall.