Alaska Peninsula unscathed after 8.2 quake

Image courtesy of the Alaska Earthquake Center

State Homeland Security and Emergency Management officials say Alaska Peninsula communities sustained little damage from a magnitude 8.2 earthquake that shook the area on July 28.

A damage assessment team from the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management that visited Perryville, Chignik Lagoon and Chignik Bay said local officials told them there were no injuries and that earthquake damage was minimal. All buildings and homes were in usable condition and no damage to water and power generation or distribution was identified.

Residents in each community evacuated low-lying areas after being advised to head for higher ground, or had already done so based on the violent shaking and known risk of tsunamis to the area.

In addition to the 8.2 Chignik earthquake, the region was hit with two additional earthquakes in the last 12 months. On July 22, 2020, a 7.9 magnitude earthquake occurred and on Oct. 19, 2020, a magnitude 7.6 earthquake occurred. Officials said that the 2021 Chignik earthquake was the largest earthquake in the nation since the 1965 Rat Islands quake, and ranks as one of the most powerful earthquakes worldwide in the last five years.