Powerful earthquake hits Hawaii
HONOLULU – A strong earthquake shook Hawaii early Sunday, causing a landslide that blocked a major highway on Hawaii Island and knocking out power across the state, authorities said.
The state Civil Defense had unconfirmed reports of injuries, but communication problems prevented more definite reports. Gov. Linda Lingle issued a disaster declaration for the entire island, saying there had been damage to buildings and roads.
The quake hit at 7:07 a.m. local time, 10 miles north-northwest of Kailua Kona, a town on the west coast of the Big Island, said Don Blakeman, a geophysicist at the National Earthquake Information Center, part of the U.S. Geological Survey.
Blakeman said there was no risk of a Pacific-wide tsunami, but a possibility of significant wave activity in Hawaii.
The Pacific Tsunami Center reported a preliminary magnitude of 6.5, while the U.S. Geological Survey gave a preliminary magnitude of 6.6. It was followed by several strong aftershocks, including one measuring a magnitude of 5.8, the Geological Survey said.
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