Posted by: hikermor

AKSAR?? - 12/01/18 10:06 PM

Hasn't posted in the past day or so, for fairly obvious reasons...I hope, and I am certain others do as well, that he is coming through the ongoing earth movements and will be able to tell us some good experiences.

Same goes for other Alaskan forum members who have been shaken, not stirred.....
Posted by: gonewiththewind

Re: AKSAR?? - 12/01/18 10:38 PM

I was thinking the same
Posted by: AKSAR

Re: AKSAR?? - 12/01/18 11:17 PM

First off, thanks for your concern. I was just thinking that I should post an update on ETS. As I type this, I just felt a short jolt of an after shock. Just to keep us all on edge. shocked

In its effects on Anchorage and the surrounding populated area, this M 7.0 is without doubt the most significant quake since 1964. While there have been other more powerful quakes (notably the M 7.9 Denali Fault quake), they were relatively far from population centers. But overall, we were very lucky. While there was significant damage to some roads and infrastructure, and somewhat less severe damage to homes and other structures, there has been no loss of life and very few injuries. Some, but thankfully few, houses sustained significant structural damage. At least one home burned. Many parts of town lost power, most for just a short time. A lot of damage in some buildings from sprinklers going off, falling ceiling tiles, etc. But most people came through with just broken crockery and jangled nerves.

In my case I was just sitting down at my laptop with a cup of coffee when it hit. It spilled half a cup of coffee, partly on my laptop. Lots of stuff knocked off of shelves. Some broken glass to clean up. One big, over full bookcase toppled completely over, leaving a big mess to pick up. A freezer in the garage "walked" a half a foot. But thankfully, so far I haven't noticed any signs of structural damage to our house.

Rumors spread wildly. As I noted above, there was some relatively minor damage to some public buildings. But at one point we heard that an entire floor collapsed at on of our main hospitals (a totally bogus rumor). One very persistent false rumor was that "they" were predicting another, even larger quake, to happen "within the hour". Apparently this was the result of people misunderstanding, quoting out of context, and wildly embellishing an entirely legit USGS note on the probability of after shocks. And of course the news media persists in showing over and over again the same scenes of a few spots with severe road damage.

All that being said, it will be awhile before we know the full economic cost. Some roads and bridges sustained serious damage which will take awhile to fix, and some peoples commute will be complicated by detours. Lots of damage in buildings from broken water lines and sprinklers. (One friend had to rush to his business to protect his computers from water damage.) I understand a few areas are still without power. A few water mains in town are damaged. And lots and lots of broken glass, knickknacks, spilled food, etc.

But all in all, it could have been much worse. No loss of life, and relatively few injuries. The epicenter was just 12 km North of Anchorage, but fairly deep (about 40 km). Had the same M 7.0 quake been shallower, things would have been much, much worse.
Posted by: gonewiththewind

Re: AKSAR?? - 12/01/18 11:24 PM

I am sorry to hear about the coffee, that would set my nerves on edge!

All kidding aside, glad you, and everyone else, are safe.
Posted by: Russ

Re: AKSAR?? - 12/01/18 11:28 PM

Captain Obvious here, but a Mag 7 earthquake is serious even for those of us who live in EQ country. I havenít heard of any fatalities, but that may be wishful thinking. Just hope it stays low.
Posted by: CJK

Re: AKSAR?? - 12/02/18 01:09 AM

Glad to hear you are 'well'. Please keep us posted.
Posted by: chaosmagnet

Re: AKSAR?? - 12/02/18 01:52 AM

Glad that you're uninjured. I'll be very interested in any lessons learned for you and for your community.
Posted by: AKSAR

Re: AKSAR?? - 12/03/18 08:38 PM

Update from Anchorage.

Things are gradually getting back to normal in the Anchorage area. Some buildings and businesses are closed due to broken pipes, damaged power systems etc. Some structures are still being evaluated for safety. But by and large, the town is functioning surprisingly well. One reason may be that as a result of the 1964 quake, Anchorage has strict building codes. There are very few brick buildings and little unreinforced masonry construction in town. Many older buildings have had seismic retrofits for life safety. And we were fortunate that the quake was fairly deep. If it had been at a shallower depth, I would be writing a different story.

Nearly all roads are passable, though a couple of major routes have lane restrictions which will impede commuters. Repairs are underway, but take longer in the winter. Only a couple of roads/streets are impassable. The Seward Highway (the only route south to the Kenai) is passable, but rock fall continues and officials are discouraging all but very essential travel.
Earthquake damaged roads

Schools are closed this week for safety evaluation and clean up. So far it appears that only one school (one of the oldest in the district) has serious structural damage and is considered unsafe to occupy. Many other schools have minor structural damage, bookshelves dumped on the floor, minor flooding from sprinklers, etc. Most of these are expected to be up and running by next week.
School damage status

The Port of Anchorage is intact. About 90% of the stuff we buy in stores, and also our fuel, comes through the port. There was some minor damage, but operations are continuing normally. There was some panic buying immediately after the quake, and some stores lost stock to to earthquake damage. North of Anchorage in Eagle River, gas stations were closed for awhile due to power outages, but things seem to be OK now. Supply lines are intact, and serious shortages do not seem to be an issue.
Earthquake hasnít disrupted food and fuel supply to Anchorage so far

There have been no reported fatalities, and only a few serious injuries due to the quake. There was no civil unrest. No zombie apocalypse. By and large people looked out for each other. We won't know the full cost of repair/replacement for awhile, and it will no doubt be expensive. But it's clear we will be OK.
Posted by: chaosmagnet

Re: AKSAR?? - 12/04/18 01:19 PM

Sounds like a lot of resiliency to me, both in infrastructure and particularly with the people.
Posted by: hikermor

Re: AKSAR?? - 12/04/18 03:09 PM

This real world resiliency is in sharp contrast to the doom and gloom scenarios put forth by many - that the urban masses will loot and pillage just as soon as their welfare checks are late. People are better than that.
Posted by: Russ

Re: AKSAR?? - 12/04/18 05:28 PM

That really depends on your respective neighborhoods. I suspect that parts of LA/greater SOCAL will go lawless rather quickly ó other parts not so much. Small towns will do much better than larger metropoli. Just an opinion, Iíll smile if proven wrong.

Iím pleasantly surprised at the lack of fatalities. Thatís really excellent.
Posted by: AKSAR

Re: AKSAR?? - 12/04/18 05:45 PM

We are still getting occaisional aftershocks. One (M 4.7) woke me up this morning. Seismologists tell us these will continue for quite awhile. Meanwhile, the task of cleaning up, and identifying and fixing damage continues. I discovered some minor damage to my garage door, making it hard to open and close (I could do it by hand, but the power mechanism had trouble). I was lucky to get someone over who fixed it.

Here is some more info on building codes, enforcement or lack thereof, and consequences in an earthquake.
Hereís why some structures fell in the Alaska earthquake and others didnít. And how we decided that.

And some info on the ongoing task of evaluating structures:
An army of engineers and contractors is working to check Anchorage homes and fix quake damage