AGANA, Guam — A major earthquake rocked the Northern Mariana Islands this morning, and seismologists pinpointed its epicenter off Anatahan Island, about 230 miles north of Guam. The island was evacuated two days earlier amid mounting fears that its volcano was erupting.
Paul Hattori of the U.S. Geological Survey office in Guam said the temblor had a magnitude of 7.4 and placed its epicenter in the Marianas Trench, one of the world's deepest ocean chasms, in the Western Pacific.
Gov. Larry Guerrero of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands issued a tidal wave warning for Saipan and Tinian islands, part of the island cluster that comprise the U.S. territory.
The 7:14 a.m. jolt startled residents from their sleep on Guam and several other islands in the Mariana chain, but there were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.