Alaska businesses remain closed 4 months after earthquake

    ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An Alaska earthquake four months ago is still causing disruptions for businesses whose buildings were damaged, according to officials.

    As of March 26, 10 commercial properties in Anchorage still carried red tags marking them as unsafe to occupy, while about 60 more commercial properties have yellow tags meaning their occupancy and use are restricted, according to city officials, the Anchorage Daily News reported Sunday.

    The 7.1-magnitude quake on Nov. 30 caused structural damage to numerous buildings that have slowed or interrupted operations for varying lengths of time, the newspaper reported.

    Affected businesses and organizations include the Cook Inlet Tribal Council, Salvation Army, Westmark Hotel, and television station KTVA, whose staff is operating from multiple buildings around the city, the newspaper reported.

    "I think what we've tried to do is give people a safe, comfortable, temporary environment to work in," said Heather Handyside, a spokeswoman for KTVA parent company General Communication Inc.

    The tribal council's building suffered broken water lines, extensive water damage to ceilings and drywall, and damage to a corner of the exterior, according to a safety assessment filed with the city.

    The hardest part of the disruption has been losing regular interaction among the 258 people who normally work there and those who use the nonprofit's services, council President Gloria O'Neill said.

    "We really miss the connection because we are scattered across Anchorage," said O'Neill, who hopes the council will be back in its offices by Dec. 1.

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