No Pacific tsunami from large Chilean earthquake

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A magnitude 7 earthquake has hit southern Chile Friday, but the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said there is no tsunami threat to Hawaii, and that a Pacific-wide tsunami is not expected.

There is no immediate word from Chile on any injuries or damage.

Electricity and phone service were disrupted and thousands of people fled to higher ground following Friday's quake, but the government quickly announced that there was no risk of a tsunami, and there were no reports of damage or injuries.

President Sebastian Pinera appealed for calm and praised his government and Chileans in general for responding quickly.

"Today we're better prepared," Pinera said. "I think we've learned the lesson of Feb. 27, 2010."

The U.S. Geological Survey says the earthquake struck Friday afternoon about 30 miles north of the city of Concepcion at a depth of 11 miles. Shaking was felt in the capital, Santiago.

The epicenter is near the site of a massive quake and resulting tsunami that killed at least 521 people and left 200,000 homeless last February.

The 2010 quake created a Pacific-wide tsunami, and a major scare in Hawaii, but it did no damage in the islands.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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