Updated at 1:59 p.m. ET

A magnitude 7.0 earthquake has hit southern Alaska, with its epicenter just north of Anchorage.

A tsunami warning has been issued for coastal regions of Cook Inlet and the Southern Kenai Peninsula. Anyone in the evacuation zone is advised to move inland or to higher ground, and stay away from the beach.

The earthquake struck just before 8:30 a.m. local time (12:29 p.m. ET). The epicenter was about 8 miles north of Anchorage, at a depth of some 25 miles.

It was followed by a series of aftershocks, some of them strong.

The original earthquake powerfully shook Anchorage, the most populous city in Alaska. Some schools and businesses across the city are closing for the day.

"I've been here 11 years and I've felt movers before, but that scared me s***less," Anchorage resident Kevin Bartley told reporter Nat Herz of Alaska Public Media. "That's the quickest I've ever seen one come on and the hardest I've ever seen it shake.

"The transformers were blowing up ... It felt like for a minute we might watch that ground open up," Bartley said.

The United States Geological Survey estimates that there is a low probability of fatalities, since most people in the region live in buildings that can withstand an earthquake. Some economic damage is possible, though, the USGS says.

Photos show major damage to a freeway ramp that provides access to the Anchorage International Airport.

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