Hawaii Earthquake

October 16, 2006

At 7:07 am on Sunday, October 15, a 6.6-magnitude earthquake on Hawaii caused at least one landslide and knocked out power across the state.

Charles Buck, UCC Hawaii Conference Minister, is checking on churches and members. At least one UCC church, Kalahikiola, on the Island of Hawaii [the Big Island] was heavily damaged (see photo). According to Linda Petrucelli a UCC member on the Big Island, there is major damage to homes and businesses. As assessments are done, further information will be posted.

The quake was centered just off the northwest shore of the Big Island of Hawaii, or about 155 miles to the southeast of Honolulu. On Hawaii Island, also known as the Big Island, there was some damage in Kailua-Kona and a landslide along a major highway, according to reports from the Pacific Tsunami Center. Local officials there were concerned about structural problems in Kona Community Hospital - the area's main hospital - and patients were being evacuated. Local hospitals reported many injuries, but no deaths have been reported.

There were unconfirmed reports of injuries, and more definite numbers should filter in as phone lines are restored, said local officials. The Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network (SATERN) was activated, then was able to suspend operations as phone systems came back up. One aftershock measured 5.8, according to the USGS.

Power was out on nearly every island, and heavy rainfall was also making damage assessments difficult. Several people were trapped in elevators but since the quake hit at 7:07 a.m. local time, most people were not in office buildings.

There was no risk of a tsunami, officials said. Airports were functioning with delays, and tourists were being asked to stay close to their hotels. Residents were also being asked to stay in place so that emergency vehicles could access the roadways.

How you can help

1. Pray for people who live in communities affected by earthquakes. 2. To help those affected by disasters you may, send gifts payable to your congregation marked for "Emergency USA" with the request they be sent through your Conference office on to Wider Church Ministries.

OR

3. Send gifts, made out to Wider Church Ministries and marked in the memo portion "Emergency USA" to the Office for Global Sharing of Resources; Wider Church Ministries; 700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44115.

OR

4. Make a secure on-line donation to Emergency USA.

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