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HI assessing damage

Residents were checking for damage and waiting in line for supplies in the wake of Hawaii's largest earthquake in 20 years.

BY SUSAN KIM | BALTIMORE | October 16, 2006

Residents were checking for damage and waiting in line for supplies in the wake of Hawaii's largest earthquake in 20 years.

Although there is some minor residential damage, homes were still standing after the 6.6-magnitude quake on Sunday. Public buildings and roadways were also damaged, with landslides covering some roadways. Crews were fanned out across the state to inspect roads and bridges, even as aftershocks continued.

The quake struck during heavy rain, heightening the ongoing risk of mudslides and sinkholes. More than 50 aftershocks have hit the region, one with a magnitude 5.8.

The worst of the damage appears to be in the counties of Hawaii and Maui, and in the city and county of Honolulu. Some residents in Hawaii, Maui and Oahu were told to expect extended power outages. But by Monday morning, power had been restored on Oahu to about half of Oahu's 800,000 residents, with electricity on the Big Island mostly restored. The power outages were largely due to power plants turning off automatically when seismic monitors were triggered by the earthquake.

Only nine patients remain in the Kona Community Hospital in Hawaii County. All other patients were evacuated when large chunks of the building's ceiling collapsed.

Some 3,000 tourists were evacuated from hotels on the Big Island.

By Monday morning, there were still no reports of fatalities but there were several reports of lacerations and broken bones. The American Red Cross opened shelters that are currently operating in community centers and public gymnasiums.

The state of Hawaii has requested a federal disaster declaration.


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