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Earthquake Jolts Cayman

Civil servants evacuated the Government Administration Building to allow inspectors to seek signs of damage.

Hazard Management Cayman Islands (HMCI) has confirmed that an earthquake measuring 5.8 magnitude on the Richter scale hit Grand Cayman this morning (Tuesday, 19 January) at 9:23 am local time.

According to a release issued by HMCI, the earthquake occurred 32 miles south of Bodden Town, Grand Cayman, 19.021 N, 80 deg 50.77 W, at a depth of 6.2 miles.

So far, 911 has received no reports of injuries or damage to structures.

No tsunami warning was issued as a result of the earthquake.

Public Works' Deputy Director, Operations & Works Stephen Brown said "the potential for significant structural or system damages as a result of a 5.8 magnitude seismic event is not considered a severe threat to well-constructed government buildings."

However, he added that people should give buildings a careful walk-through to inspect for new or expanded cracks in walls, cracked glass in doors and windows, or any changes in appearances of ceilings.

Chief Education Officer Shirley Wahler advises that schools remain open.

School officials have received the all clear from Hazard Management Cayman Islands to re-enter buildings. However, Department of Education facilities officers will continue conducting in-depth evaluations regarding building integrity throughout today.

Teachers and other staff on site, along with RCIPS officers, are doing everything possible to maintain calm.

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For further information contact: Cornelia Oliver