KODIAK, Alaska — Little damage was reported in the aftermath of a 7.9 magnitude earthquake that shook Alaska, but at least two communities showed signs of its impact.
Tuesday morning’s quake cracked the walls of the Kodiak City fire station, according to City Manager Mike Tvenge. A Nikiski refinery reported a small oil spill at one of its outdoor tanks near Kenai.
Kodiak Mayor Pat Branson said fixing up the fire hall had already been a priority for the city.
“The governor called this morning to make sure Kodiak was in a good state,” Branson said Tuesday. “We’re going to be responding because the fire hall did receive damage, and replacing the fire hall is the No. 1 priority on our state capital requests list.”
In Nikiski, Andeavor’s Kenai Refinery was able to contain the spill and avoid oil permeating into the ground. Spokeswoman Kate Blair said about 420 gallons (1,590 liters) spilled.
The spill was the only earthquake-related incident that the Department of Environmental Conservation knew of Tuesday.
“Most of the oil is stuck to the outside of the tank — it ran down the side of the tank,” said Jade Gamble, a department program specialist. “There wasn’t a lot of standing oil on the ground — little tiny puddles, and they were able to vacuum up a few gallons, but most of it is across the side of the tank.”
The tank also spilled oil during the 7.1 magnitude Iniskin Earthquake that rattled the peninsula on Jan. 24, 2016, Gamble said. Since then, she said, Andeavor had dropped the level in the tank about 6 inches (15 centimeters) to prevent spills in future earthquakes.