This is the fourth magnitude 7 or higher quake to hit the Caribbean since 2000, according to AccuWeather meteorologist Jesse Ferrell.
A 7.7 magnitude quake struck the Caribbean Sea near Cuba and Jamaica earlier today.
The earthquake, which centered 6 miles deep on a fault boundary between the North American and Caribbean plate, struck about 73 miles northwest of Lucea, Jamaica. While the center didn't strike in the center of the land mass, it was large enough to potentially cause damage. No reports of injuries have come through, but social media has indicated that the quake can be felt as far as Florida, the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico, and the Grand Cayman Island.
Dr. Lucy Jones, a seismologist who studied the quake, said that the tsunami threat is minimal in the area.
The M7.7 Jamaican quake produced sideways motion on the fault, so the tsunami risk is low. (Seafloor should move up to make tsunami.) But if I'm ever at the beach and feel strong shaking, I move to high ground. Downside is I lose a day at the beach. The upside could be my life.— Dr. Lucy Jones (@DrLucyJones) January 28, 2020
No injuries or road closures have been reported in Cuba. Officials said there were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.
The quake could be felt strongly in Santiago, according to Belkis Guerrero.
"We were all sitting and we felt the chairs move. We heard the noise of everything moving around," she said, adding that there was no apparent damage in the heart of the colonial city."It felt very strong but it doesn't look like anything happened,'' she told The Associated Press.
Jamaican twitter is killing meeeeee 💀 a 7.7 quake just hit and everyone a buss joke.— "Who die of insort?" (@ashindestad) January 28, 2020
Jamaicans right now with that quake pic.twitter.com/d13YjHB4Qs— kahari (@savkahari) January 28, 2020
Jamaicans move to damn fast, earth quake not even finish and tweets up already— Empress 🌻 (@abigailcamp__) January 28, 2020
To get a sense of how the 7.7 Richter scale measures quakes, check out the infograph below.