Last updated: 10:32 AM ET, Wed September 30 2015

Earthquake in Chile Triggers Tsunami Watch for Hawaii

Impacting Travel | Barry Kaufman | September 16, 2015

Earthquake in Chile Triggers Tsunami Watch for Hawaii

Photo via NOAA

The U.S. Geological Survey has confirmed that a magnitude 8.3 earthquake hit Chile at 6:54 p.m. ET Wednesday night, centered around 142 miles north by northwest of Santiago Chile. The quake, as well as several subsequent aftershocks ranging from 4.0 to 6.3 in intensity, are responsible for at least one death as well as heavy flooding.

The Associated Press is reporting that the quake could be felt as far away as Beunos Aires, Argentina.

The danger continues, as the strength of the quake has triggered a tsunami warning for Hawaii. According to a statement from Hawaii Tourism, the earliest tsunami waves may impact the Hawaiian Islands is at 3:06 a.m. on Thursday morning.   

While a tsunami warning does indicate a high degree of danger, the National Weather Service issued a statement late Wednesday night saying, “Based on all available data, a major tsunami is not expected to strike the state of Hawaii. However...sea level changes and strong currents may occur along all coasts that could be a hazard to swimmers and boaters as well as to persons near the shore at beaches and in harbors and marinas. The threat may continue for several hours after the initial wave arrival." 

A quake of similar size struck Chile in April of last year, triggering tsunami warnings throughout Chile and leading to the deaths of six.


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