6.24 Quake Hits Southwest of Talkeetna


Richard Rash with the National Tsunami Warning Center in Palmer says information is still coming in.

Rash: “We are experiencing a [6.24] earthquake approximately 60 miles southwest of Talkeetna, Alaska.”

Lockyer: “Do you know how deep it was, because our building was rocking right here.”

Rash: “Yeah, it was pretty intense being close and local, but I don’t have that information right now, the scientists are still working that up”

Lockyer: “Are you expecting aftershocks?”

Rash: “Most likely.”

There are reports of it being felt as far north as Fairbanks and as far south as Homer.

In Anchorage, UAA bookstore manager Kristi Michels says the quake knocked over some of the store’s displays and school supplies.

“We did have a customer come in right at the register and she was not liking it at all,” Michels says. “She comes in saying, ‘This is a big one. This is a big one,’ but the cashier just kept her cool and talked her down.”

The novelty of a 6.2-earthquake gave UAA student Cecil Brown a thrill.

“I’m like, ‘this is an earthquake,’ but I’m from the desert, where there is no such thing as an earthquake and I’ve lived here for two years and slept through every single one of them,” Brown says. “So this was the first one where I was cognizantly aware that ‘m in an earthquake. It was pretty exciting.”

A couple of students, like Natalie Tierny, didn’t even notice.

“I didn’t feel it,” she laughs. “I was walking outside and I was listening to the radio on my phone and they kept saying like, ‘oh it’s still going!’ But I was not sure what they were talking about.”

John Bellini, with the National Earthquake Reporting Center in Golden, Colorado, says the duration of the quake lengthens the further from the epicenter the tremor is felt.

“Dependent, at least as far as how people feel it, depends on how far away they are,” Bellini said. “An actual earthquake of this size at the epicenter would last 5-10 seconds or so, maybe as long as 15 seconds.”

So far, there are no reports of significant damage coming in, though it seems some downtown Anchorage buildings were evacuated.




Earthquake preparedness tips from Anchorage’s Office of Emergency Management:

Before an earthquake:

  • Lower your risk of injury and property damage by making your home earthquake safe.
  • The number one cause of injury and death during an earthquake is falling debris. Go to  www.ready.gov/earthquakes for specific recommendations.

During an earthquake:

  • Drop down where you are; do not try to move from one location to another. If you are outside, stay outside. If you are inside, stay in the room you are in.
  • Take cover underneath a sturdy piece of furniture to keep falling debris from hitting you.
  • If there is nothing for you to get underneath, move away from large objects and glass and drop to the floor, covering your head and neck.

After an earthquake:

  • Check on your family and neighbors to make sure everyone is okay. Provide first aid as needed.
  • Check your home for damage to determine if it is safe to shelter in place. If you aren’t sure, evacuate.

For more information on personal preparedness contact the Office of Emergency Management at 343-1401 with any questions.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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APTI Reporter-Producer Ellen Lockyer started her radio career in the late 1980s, after a stint at bush Alaska weekly newspapers, the Copper Valley Views and the Cordova Times. When the Exxon Valdez ran aground in Prince William Sound, Valdez Public Radio station KCHU needed a reporter, and Ellen picked up the microphone. Since then, she has literally traveled the length of the state, from Attu to Eagle and from Barrow to Juneau, covering Alaska stories on the ground for the AK show, Alaska News Nightly, the Alaska Morning News and for Anchorage public radio station, KSKA elockyer (at) alaskapublic (dot) org  |  907.550.8446 | About Ellen