Hawaii and part of California's coast are under tsunami advisories after an 8.3-magnitude earthquake off the coast of Chile. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center originally issued a watch for Hawaii but later downgraded the alert to an advisory, saying that current data indicated there would be no major tsunami in the state. It did say, however, that sea-level changes and dangerous currents could pose a threat to those in or near the water. A similar advisory was issued for southern and central California, affecting about 300 miles of coastline stretching from the southern end of Orange County to San Luis Obispo County on the central coast. The possible changes associated with the advisory are expected to hit first in the south at about 4:45am PDT and move north in the following minutes.
The powerful earthquake rattled Chileans, killing five people and shaking so strongly the tremor was felt in places across South America. Authorities worked into the early hours today assessing damage in several coastal towns that saw flooding from small tsunami waves set off by the quake. Numerous aftershocks, including one at magnitude 7 and four above 6, shook the region after the initial earthquake—the strongest tremor since a powerful quake and tsunami killed hundreds in 2010 and leveled part of the city of Concepcion in south-central Chile. (Read more Hawaii stories.)