Transcript for 7.0 magnitude earthquake strikes near downtown Anchorage
A very busy news night. We begin with the powerful earthquake rocking Anchorage, Alaska. A 7.0, with aftershocks. Parts of the ceiling in this courtroom coming down. Lawyers dropping to the floor, crawling on hands and knees. You see one hiding under the desk to the right. At the airport, a scare for air traffic controllers. Massive damage inside this newsroom, and buckling roads everywhere, swallowing cars. Tonight, the governor declaring a state of emergency as they brace for more aftershocks. Matt Gutman leading us off. Reporter: The shaking started at 8:30 this morning. This Anchorage courtroom seemingly on rollers. Debris crashing, pictures flapping. And those inside holding on, then diving under desks. Oh, my god. It's okay. Reporter: And terrifying moments at the airport. Earthquake! Earthquake! Reporter: Panic everywhere. Inside this home, you can hear the rumbling. This mother frantically searching for her son before grabbing him and rushing to safety. For hours today, as fires erupted from burst gas pipes, Alaska's biggest city seemed completely cut off from the world. The 7.0 magnitude quake struck about 25 miles deep. But its epicenter, just miles from downtown Anchorage. The local CBS station, livestreaming the damage to its studios. Ceilings caved in, offices flooded. Roads cratered, this car marooned where the road ripped apart. Holy smokes. Can you get out of there? Reporter: For hours, the city's airports shut down. And before evacuating their tower, air traffic controllers frantically waving off incoming planes. FedEx, go around! FedEx, go around! Going around, FedEx 49. Reporter: Fear ripping through colony high school, north of the epicenter. We're gonna die. Reporter: Students cowering beneath their desks. Sarah Palin posting this video of damage at her parents' home. Emergency responders inundated with calls. And when the quake struck, Dr. Owen ala was operating on a patient. We had to give the patient a big bear hug so the patient doesn't fall off the bed. Incredible. Matt, already a number of aftershocks, and authorities are warning they could last for a week or longer? Reporter: That's right. We've been keeping count of the aftershocks. There have been well over 50 of them so far. We're told alaskans should brace for many more, including some that could be powerful enough to liquefy the Earth. It could turn the soil into a consistency that's similar to quicksand. That's what we likely saw today. No one thankfully was killed. Matt. Thank you. And passengers seeing the cover of an airplane engine
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