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Earthquake Alert

Tsunami warnings issued after 7.7 Magnitude earthquake south of Cuba

jamaica eq

An earthquake of Magnitude 7.7 shook the coast of Jamaica on Tuesday, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS). It was followed by another 6.5 Magnitude earthquake to the west near the Cayman Islands.

Hundreds of people were evacuated from high-rise buildings near downtown Miami after the powerful earthquake in the Caribbean Sea.

Initially, the larger quake was reported as a Magnitude 7.3.

The quake occurred 72 miles northwest of Lucea in Jamaica.

There are no reports of damages or victims at this time.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center of the US National Weather Service has issued a tsunami threat message indicating a threat of tsunami waves that reach 0.3 to 1 meter above the tide level for the coasts of Jamaica, Belize, Cuba, Honduras, Mexico, and the Cayan Islands.

It is possible that the first tsunami waves have already hit the nearest coasts of the Cayman Islands, southeastern Cuba, and northern Jamaica. The tsunami waves could take another 1-3 hours to reach parts of Honduras and Belize.

National authorities will determine the appropriate alert level for each country, according to the threat message.

Several buildings in Miami were shaking Tuesday but no injuries or structural damage has been reported, Miami police and fire officials tweeted.

Jose Borrego was in a work meeting at the Bank of America building in the Brickell neighborhood when he "felt slight movement of the building." When he came outside, he said he noticed every building in the area was being evacuated.

"The evacuation was pretty smooth, but all in all anxious about the state of emergency and the lack of information regarding the situation," said Borrego, an employee of software company Kaseya.

At least eight buildings in the area decided to evacuate following the earthquake, Miami City Commissioner Ken Russell told CNN affiliate WPLG.

The Stephen P. Clark Government Center was closed as a precaution, Miami-Dade county officials said.

Jose Abreu, an employee at another high-rise, said he felt the walls vibrating for about 90 seconds but thought it was a malfunctioning fan.

"I thought it was the fan acting up on me. I didn't think anything of it," he said. "I just went along, until the building announcement came through the speakers and I just evacuated in the back of the building."

Others in Miami's financial district told CNN they didn't feel shaking but were concerned about retrieving items from their offices.

National-World / News

Jeff Stahl

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