6 people describe what this morning’s 7.9-magnitude earthquake felt like
Early Tuesday morning, a magnitude-7.9 earthquake struck the Gulf of Alaska. Authorities subsequently issued a tsunami warning to residents of Alaska — and the entire west coasts of the United States and Canada. The warning was lifted just four hours later, and no casualties have been reported. That being said, the earthquake was strong and many Alaskans felt it.
Several news outlets were able to get in contact with Alaska residents who felt the earthquake. A few people described the tremors as some of the worst they’ve ever felt, and several confirmed that they could feel them for at least a minute. And obviously, waking up to an earthquake in the middle of the night is a super jarring experience.
Here are how six people described this morning’s earthquake.
"It was a very long, slow build up. Creepy, more than anything. Definitely the longest, and I was born here," Heather Rand of Anchorage, Alaska told CNN. She added that the quake "felt like the longest she had ever experienced."
Nathaniel Moore felt the earthquake from a fishing boat. He told CNN that he felt the boat “shake really good for a minute.” Following the earthquake, the boat quickly retreated to shore. All its passengers sought higher ground as the tsunami warning was broadcasted.
Another resident, Wendy Bliss Snipes, told CNN that her child slept through the whole thing. According to Snipes, the earthquake was “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.”
Eddie Athey, the fire chief of Seward, Alaska, told CBS News that the quake “felt like a gentle rattle” and lasted for what felt like a minute-and-a-half. “It went on long enough that you start thinking to yourself, ‘Boy, I hope this stops soon because it’s just getting worse,’” Athey told the outlet.
Peter J. Haeussler, an Alaska-based research geologist, lives over 350 miles from the epicenter (the point where an earthquake originates). Despite his distance, he told the New York Times that the quake still woke him, adding that he could feel the shaking for around one minute.
Lt. Tim Putney, who serves the police department of Kodiak, Alaska, told The Guardian that the earthquake woke him from a heavy sleep. “I’ve been on Kodiak for 19 years that was the strongest, longest-lasting one I’ve ever felt, he told the outlet. He also added that he felt shaking for at least half a minute.
If you live in an area that is susceptible to earthquakes, click here for preparedness tips.
Ultimately, we’re glad that no deaths have been reported, and we hope that this earthquake’s worst moments are long gone.