The US government has issued a disaster declaration for parts of the West Coast after a massive earthquake hit the Pacific Northwest this morning, killing at least 11 people and injuring more than 200.
The death toll rose to 17 as of midday.
The earthquake hit at about 8:45am local time (07:45 GMT) in a region of Alaska, the state’s capital of Anchorage, and the southernmost point of the US.
The epicentre of the quake was about 120km south-east of the town of Wrangell, Alaska, and at a depth of about 8km.
It was the biggest since 2011, when an earthquake hit parts of Alaska and Washington state.
In Washington, people were ordered to stay indoors, with the city of Seattle asking residents to stay home until further notice.
In Alaska, officials issued a warning that there were potential aftershocks.
“Due to the magnitude and location of this event, we are currently issuing a disaster status report,” Alaska Department of Public Safety spokesman Brad Stadler told ABC News.
“We have no additional information to share.”
In Washington state, the US Geological Survey (USGS) said that it had been assessing damage from the quake.
The USGS said that there was a possibility of a magnitude-7.1 earthquake in Alaska and that the epicentral limit of a large earthquake is 7.1 on the Richter scale, which is between magnitude 6.5 and 6.7.
It also said that a number of buildings could have collapsed in the area.
“Damage is estimated to be about $500 million,” the USGS wrote on its website.
A preliminary report by the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) said there were at least two people who were unaccounted for in the disaster area.
There was a report of “significant damage to structures” in the community of West Point, a town near the epicenter, according to the US Bighorn.
The Bighorns are a group of mostly northern Paiute Indians in the Bighornia National Forest.
The tribe has about 600 members.
The governor of Washington state said that the USFS was coordinating with the US Army Corps of Engineers to assist in the cleanup.
“There are a lot of structures that are in pretty bad shape,” he said.
“I think that the whole community has a sense of relief, a sense that this is just a once in a lifetime event, but I do think there’s going to be a lot more work that needs to be done,” said Gov.
The state of Washington also issued a state of emergency for about 50,000 people who live in remote communities that are near the quake epicentres.
Residents of some of those communities were told to stay at home.
The National Weather Service in Anchorage, Alaska issued a flash flood warning for areas along the coast, with winds gusts of up to 80km/h (50mph).
“Due a lack of adequate warning, there are many people in the affected areas who are being asked to stay inside until further information becomes available,” the weather service said in a statement.