Powerful Magnitude 7.7 Earthquake Strikes Near Jamaica and Cuba
At a Glance
- The earthquake struck at 2:10 p.m. EST Tuesday in the Caribbean Sea.
- The quake caused strong to severe shaking in northwest Jamaica.
- People in Miami reportedly felt the quake.
- Tsunami waves up to 3 feet are possible.
A strong earthquake struck between Jamaica and Cuba in the Caribbean Sea on Tuesday afternoon.
The quake had a preliminary magnitude of 7.7, according to the U.S. Geological Survey, and was felt as far away as Miami.
The earthquake caused very strong to severe shaking in far western Jamaica, capable of moderate to heavy damage, the USGS said. It also said moderate shaking was felt on Grand Cayman Island.
The quake struck at 2:10 p.m. EST about 75 miles off the northwest tip of Jamaica and 50 miles off of southeastern Cuba. It was about 6 miles deep, USGS said.
The National Weather Service’s Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said tsunami waves between 1 to 3 feet were possible for the coasts of Jamiaca, Cuba, Cayman Islands, Belize, Honduras and Mexico.
The USGS received reports from people in Miami saying they felt the quake. Miami-Dade Police reported receiving phone calls of buildings shaking, and multiple buildings were being evacuated, NBC 6 reported.
Miami-Dade’s Stephen P. Clark Government Center was also evacuated, according to a reporter for the Miami Herald.
In Montego Bay, Jamaica, Claude Diedrick, 71, was sitting in his vehicle reading when the earthquake began.
“It felt to me like i was on a bridge and like there were two or three heavy trucks and the bridge was rocking but there were no trucks,” he told The Associated Press.
He said he had seen no damage around his home in northern Jamaica.
The quake was also felt in Santiago in far-eastern Cuba, Belkis Guerrero, who works in a Catholic cultural center in the city, told AP. But she added there didn’t appear to be any damage in the heart of the colonial city.
“We were all sitting and we felt the chairs move,” she said. “We heard the noise of everything moving around.
“It felt very strong but it doesn’t look like anything happened,” she told The Associated Press.
In the Cayman Islands, roads cracked and sewage spilled from broken pipes, AP reported.
There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.
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