Washington: US authorities have cancelled a tsunami warning for Hawaii hours after a 7.7 earthquake in Canada`s Charlotte Islands sent some residents scrambling to higher land as they prepared for a fierce impact of waves from thousands of miles away.
The tsunami warning was replaced in Hawaii by a tsunami advisory indicating that strong currents or waves that are dangerous to those in or very near the water are expected, but significant inundation is not, CNN reported.
Earlier, local television showed images of bumper-to-bumper traffic on roads leading from the coast to higher ground. About 80,000 people live in evacuation zones on the island of Oahu, where Honolulu is located.
The first waves to hit Honolulu didn`t seem much stronger than usual. But scientists warned people not to be fooled by the initial waves, which often aren`t the biggest.
"It`s not just one wave, it`s a succession of waves," Gerard Fryer, senior geophysicist at the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center, was quoted as saying by CNN.
"A (magnitude) 7.7 is a big, hefty earthquake -- not something you can ignore," he said. "It definitely would have done some damage if it had been under a city."
Instead, the quake struck about 139 km (86 miles) south of Masset on British Columbia`s Queen Charlotte Islands of Canada. No major damage was reported.
The Alaska Tsunami Warning Center issued a warning for western British Columbia from Vancouver to the southern panhandle of Alaska.
Canadians as far away as Prince Rupert, on mainland British Columbia, felt the quake.