A 7.6 magnitude earthquake struck in the Caribbean Sea between the coast of Honduras and the Cayman Islands, Tuesday evening. More exactly, it was centered about 125.4 miles north/northeast off the coast of Barra Patucca, Honduras, and located about 25 miles (44 kilometers) from Honduras' Swan Islands. The quake was very shallow (6.2 miles) which amplifies its effect.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (PTWC) said tsunami waves from this quake were possible within 620 miles (1,000 kilometers) of the epicenter along the coasts of Cayman Islands, Jamaica, Mexico, Honduras, Cuba, Belize, San Andres, Costa Rica, Panama, Nicaragua and Guatemala. Tsunamis can travel over 800 kilometers per hour (500 miles) at the deepest point of the water.
No tsunami waves had been confirmed, but that a sea level rise from a foot to 3 feet (0.3 to 1 meter) above normal might occur. The National Weather Service in Puerto Rico earlier in the night urged "persons located in/near the ocean" to move away from the water. Officials in Honduras said shaking was registered across much of the nation and there were some reports of cracks in homes in Colon province along the northern coast and Olancho in eastern Honduras. No reports of serious damage was immediately. President Juan Orlando Hernandez wrote on Twitter that Honduras activated its emergency system and asked people to remain calm. In recent years, tsunamis have been responsible for significant numbers of deaths and environmental destruction.