East Hawaii News

No Pacific-Wide Tsunami From Earthquake in Chile

January 30, 2013, 10:47 AM HST
* Updated January 31, 11:34 AM
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***Updated at 11 p.m. with additional information.***

An earthquake that struck this morning on the central coast of Chile did not generate a Pacific-wide tsunami, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said.

The 6.7-magnitude quake occurred at 10:15 a.m. Hawaii time at a depth of about 30 miles, according to information from the center based in Ewa Beach on Oahu.

Its epicenter was 63 miles south-southwest of Copiapo, a town of less than 10,000 people 40 miles from the coast. It was also located 127 miles north-northeast of the port city of Coquimbo, which has a population of more than 400,000.

Chile’s last strong earthquake came on Nov. 14, 2012. It had a magnitude of 6.1 and struck 55 miles north of Coquimbo. No large tsunami was generated.


Chile was the location of a 9.5-magnitude earthquake in 1960 which generated a tsunami that devastated Hilo and killed 61 on the Big Island.


That tremor has been described by the US Geological Survey as the world’s strongest earthquake on record.

Chile is prone to earthquakes as a result of tectonic forces. Scientists say the Nazca Plate is subducting, or moving under, the South American Plate at the Chilean Trench at a rate of nearly three inches per year.

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