A large earthquake has rocked buildings in Anchorage and caused lamp posts and trees to sway, prompting people to run out of offices and seek shelter under office desks.
The U.S. Geological Survey said the magnitude of the earthquake was 7.0, after initially giving a preliminary magnitude of 6.7.
Gov. Bill Walker issued a disaster declaration in the aftermath.
@AkGovBillWalker: (1/2) After a major earthquake, I have issued a declaration of disaster & I have been in direct contact with the White House. Major General Laurie Hummel & I are now working w emergency responders to make sure Alaskans are safe.
@AkGovBillWalker: (2/2) From the incident command center established at Joint Base Elmendorf and Richardson we are closely monitoring reports of aftershocks and assessing damage to roads, bridges and buildings. My family is praying for yours. God bless Alaska.
No tsunami danger exists for the U.S. west coast, British Columbia and Alaska, according to the US National Tsunami Warning Center. The center had initially issued a tsunami warning for coastal zones of southern Alaska.
Michael Burgy, a senior technician with the National Tsunami Warning Center in Palmer, Alaska, said the tsunami warning was automatically generated based on the quake's size and proximity to shore. Scientists monitored gauges to see if the quake generated big waves. Because there were none, they canceled the warning.
USGS says the earthquake Friday morning was centered about 7 miles (12 kilometers) north of Alaska's largest city, with a population of about 300,000. There were no immediate reports of any deaths or serious injuries.
People went back inside buildings after the earthquake but a smaller 5.8 magnitude aftershock a short time later sent them running back into the streets again.
Cracks could be seen in a two-story downtown Anchorage building, and photographs posted to social media showed fractured roads and collapsed ceiling tiles at an Anchorage high school. One image showed a car stranded on an island of pavement, surrounded by cavernous cracks where the earthquake split the road.
Cereal boxes and packages of batteries littered the floor of a grocery store, and picture frames and mirrors were knocked from living room walls.