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Experts give earthquake warning

ANCHORAGE, Ak. (WCIA) -- A massive 7.9 magnitude earthquake off of Alaska coast prompted a tsunami warning for that state earlier this week.

There was also a tsunami watch for the west coast of the United States. People in Alaska heard ominous warning sirens. All of the watches were eventually lifted and despite the strong magnitude of the earthquake, there was only minor damage reported along the Alaskan Coast. There was also only a slight rise in wave activity in that area.

Professors at the U of I tell us while events like this are common on the west coast, they would be devastating in Central Illinois, simply because we're less prepared.

"If something were to happen here, we would see significant damage to buildings, bridges, pipelines and infrastructure that would bring a significant affect on our ability to conduct daily life ... including fatalities, high number of people injured," says Paolo Gardoni.

In earthquakes where there is building damage, researchers use that to prepare for the future. That includes learning how to build safer structures that have a faster recovery process.


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