Morning earthquakes shake Anchorage

Posted: Wednesday, February 06, 2002

ANCHORAGE - Two sharp earthquakes jolted downtown Anchorage early today, knocking items off shelves, setting off alarms and causing downtown buildings to shudder. But there were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.

"It's just one of those things that reminds you you live in Alaska," said Bruce Turner of the Alaska Tsunami Warning Center in Palmer.

The tsunami center estimated the preliminary magnitude for both quakes at 4.8. Both were centered about 10 miles southeast of the city.

Anchorage police said they had received no reports of damage.

The first quake hit at 8:18 a.m., and the second followed a minute later. They were not strong enough to generate a tsunami, a damaging seismic sea wave, the warning center said.

The quake shook things up at the Sunrise Grill and Pancake House in Midtown Anchorage, said waitress Memory Moore.

"The first one wasn't bad, but the second one - I thought it was going to turn the pie case over. It was a jolter. I ran and got underneath the door frame," Moore said. "The pies were shaking and the lights were swaying."

The 1964 Good Friday earthquake in Alaska, which killed 131 people, generated a tsunami and has been estimated at 9.2 magnitude.

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