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Alaska earthquake, tsunami

A magnitude 7.9 earthquake struck off Alaska’s coast

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Updated January 23, 2018 08:04 AM EST

A 7.9 magnitude earthquake struck off Alaska's Kodiak Island early Tuesday, prompting a tsunami warning for a large swath of the state's coast.

Officials at the National Tsunami Center canceled the warning after a few tense hours after waves failed to show up in coastal Alaska communities. No serious damage had been reported.

The strong earthquake hit at 12:30 a.m. and was recorded about 170 miles southeast of Kodiak Island in the Gulf of Alaska.

Kodiak Island is located about 200 miles southwest of Anchorage, Alaska's largest city, which was not under a tsunami threat.

Initially, the USGS said the earthquake was a magnitude 8.2. That prompted the tsunami warning for coastal Alaska and Canada's British Columbia, while the remainder of the U.S. West Coast was under a watch.

An advisory remained in effect for a small part of the state. Watches were canceled for Washington, Oregon, California and Hawaii. Officials in Japan also said there was no tsunami threat there.

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

Kodiak officials warned residents to evacuate if they lived in low-lying areas. Residents scrambled to safety, and some sought refuge in schools that were transformed into shelters.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

A magnitude 8.2 earthquake off Alaska's Kodiak Island prompted a tsunami warning for a large swath of coastal Alaska and Canada's British Columbia while the remainder of the U.S. West Coast was under a watch.

The strong earthquake was recorded about 175 miles southeast of Kodiak Island early Tuesday morning.

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

Kodiak officials warned residents to evacuate if they lived in low-lying areas.

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

A dispatcher at the Kodiak police department answered a call from The Associated Press by saying, "If this about the tsunami, you need to get to higher ground immediately."

Kodiak officials warned residents to evacuate if they lived in low-lying areas.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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