ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The latest on an earthquake that struck south-central Alaska early Sunday (all times local):
Four homes have been destroyed in natural gas explosions or fire following a magnitude 7.1 earthquake in southern Alaska.
Kenai (KEY’-nigh) Fire Department battalion chief Tony Prior says explosions from a natural gas leak destroyed two of the homes. The other two were fully engulfed in flames by the time firefighters determined it was safe enough from gas for them to enter. The fire department focused on keeping the fires in these two homes from spreading to nearby houses.
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Prior says there were no injuries. He says the second house explosion was major, and they are fortunate no one was hurt in that one.
About 30 homes total were evacuated in the Kenai neighborhood. Some people are staying at a shelter at the Kenai National Guard Armory.
Workers with the gas utility are examining the remaining homes to determine if the earthquake severed gas lines to the homes and are establishing temporary lines with the hope displaced residents can get back home today.
Alaska Gov. Bill Walker says he’s relieved there wasn’t more damage given the severity of Sunday’s magnitude 7.1 earthquake.
Walker also says the quake serves as a reminder for people to be prepared for a natural disaster.
The earthquake struck about 1:30 a.m. The temblor was widely felt in most of Alaska’s largest population centers, but damage was minimal. There was a gas leak that apparently led to the explosion of one home in Kenai (KEY’-nigh), where there was also some road damage in one area.
Walker says a shelter has been set up for those in need.
Walker is a survivor of the 1964 Alaska earthquake, which is the second most powerful on record worldwide. He urges all Alaskans to have a response plan in place in case of an emergency.
The earthquake that rattled southern Alaska early Sunday morning could be followed by aftershocks for weeks.
The U.S. Geological Survey on its website lists the temblor at magnitude 7.1. That was the initial magnitude given by the federal agency before downgrading it to magnitude 6.8 shortly after the quake.
There were no injuries in the earthquake, felt across Alaska’s most populated areas. It did cause a gas leak that lead to an explosion in one home and the evacuation of a neighborhood in the community of Kenai (KEY’-nigh).
Alaska State Seismologist Michael West says this is the largest earthquake in decades in this region of Alaska. He also says there’s been numerous smaller aftershocks, and those could continue for weeks.
A police chief in Alaska says one home was extensively damaged in an explosion following a Sunday morning earthquake.
Thirty homes that have been evacuated as firefighters, policemen and gas utility workers continue to work on the gas leak that followed a magnitude 6.8 earthquake early Sunday morning. The temblor was centered about 160 miles southwest of Anchorage.
Kenai Police Chief Gus Sandahl says about 20 people are taking shelter at the Kenai Armory after the neighborhood was evacuated.
Police initially responded to another house and put out a fire there with an extinguisher. But then a flame came under a wall, and they backed off. Firefighters put this fire out, and the explosion happened at a neighboring house a few hours later.
Sandahl says all firefighters and utility workers were accounted for, and there’s been no reports of injury.
An early morning earthquake that rattled Alaska has been followed by a second aftershock in the Cook inlet region.
The Alaska Earthquake Center says preliminary reports put the latest aftershock at a magnitude-4.7.
A magnitude-6.8 earthquake struck early Sunday knocked items off shelves and walls in south-central Alaska and jolted the nerves of residents in this earthquake-prone region. But there were no immediate reports of injuries.
The earthquake struck about 1:30 a.m. Alaska time and was centered 53 miles west of Anchor Point in the Kenai Peninsula, which is about 160 miles southwest of Anchorage, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. About two hours later, a magnitude-4.3 aftershock hit the Cook Inlet, the agency said.
The possibility of a gas leak led to the evacuation of more than a dozen homes in Kenai.