Monday, 17 December, 2018

More than 1,000 aftershocks rattle Alaska region where magnitude 7.0 quake struck

Aerial view of Anchorage Alaska in 2017 Aerial view of Anchorage Alaska in 2017
Pablo Mccormick | 05 December, 2018, 15:00

Life is slowly settling down in Alaska following a powerful quake that rattled buildings, disrupted power and caused heavy damage to the only highway that goes north of Anchorage.

Some residents went back to work. Gov. Bill Walker, who leaves office at noon Monday, gave state workers in the Anchorage area the day off to help reduce the number of cars on the highway.

"Even when people were initially concerned, people who might have been reaching for the last item, looked over and saw someone else and said, 'Yes, we are sharing this with you, '" he said. A dozen have had magnitudes of 4.5 or greater.

Meanwhile, the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities is assessing damage to transportation infrastructure.

Matthews, who was back at work at a chiropractor's office, and her husband have no quake insurance.

She said Saturday there were no obvious signs of damage and no operational impact on the pipeline.

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People stand outside the police headquarters building in Anchorage, Alaska, after it was closed following an quake, November 30, 2018.

The 7.0 magnitude quake struck at 8:29 a.m. Friday, over an hour before sunrise.

Alaska averages 40,000 earthquakes per year, which is more large quakes than the other 49 states of the US combined.

Two major cargo companies operate at the port. Then came a series of smaller quakes.

"The chance is very small, but it's not impossible", U.S. Geological Survey Geophysicist Paul Caruso said. However, a complete inspection of the track and bridges hasn't been completed, so Sullivan said officials do not know when rail service to Fairbanks will resume.

GSA spokesman Chad Hutson said Monday boilers in the federal building are leaking, leaving it without heat.

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The nearby Historic Federal Building, where the bankruptcy court is located, also remained closed.

The aftershocks should be weaker and less frequent in the coming days, but officials can't say for sure when they'll stop, he said.

Schools have been closed until December 10, which should also reduce traffic.

According to CBS Anchorage affiliate KTVA-TV most schools in the Matanuska-Susitna School District have also been closed until Tuesday.

The state late Saturday identified 47 earthquake-damaged roads and bridges, most of which can not be fully repaired until the region's dark and snowy winter has passed.

Delivery of food supplies, fuel and other cargo has not been interrupted after the powerful natural disaster that struck Anchorage on Friday.

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Anchorage's Port of Alaska, which handles half the goods shipped to the state, is also being evaluated for damages, Falsey said.

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