Massive Earthquake Rocks Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea earthquake.
(Photo: European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre/Twitter.com)

The remote New Britain Island located in Papua New Guinea was recently struck by a powerful earthquake. According to data released by the United State Geological Survey, the earthquake reached a magnitude 7.0 based on the Richter Scale. The report also added that there were no immediate signs of damage.

According to various seismological data, the earthquake hit at about 200 kilometers south-west of the Rabaul town. The earthquake has a depth of 40 kilometers and hit just before 7 A.M. local time.

As a result of the massive quake, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center issued warnings about the possibility of a tsunami as an aftermath. The center later reported that waves that are less than 30 centimeters in height are expected to hit the coastlines of Papua New Guinea and its neighboring region of Solomon Islands. The Australian Tsunami Warning Center advised its citizens there is no need to worry as the earthquake does not pose any immediate threat to the country.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center issued a tsunami warning alerting the coastal areas covering 300 kilometers from the quake's epicenter.

At the onset of the quake, it was reported to have a magnitude of 7.3 but was later downgraded after comprehensive data were gathered. Following the quake, at least two aftershocks were reported that scored more than 5 on the Richter Scale.

Papua New Guinea sits on the Pacific Ring of Fire, a region that is widely regarded as geologically active. The country is still recovering from a 7.5 quake which struck the country in February. The quake killed at least 100 people.

The recent earthquake came just days after a magnitude 6 earthquake struck the Indonesian islands of Bali and Java. The earthquake killed three people and damaged some buildings. The quake reportedly originated in the Bali Sea and managed to shoo buildings and infrastructures on nearby resorts. It caused massive panic and even prompted some residents to left the capital of Bali, Densapar.

Following the major quake, a series of small tremors continue to rock some part of the region. After the 7.0 magnitude quake, it was quickly followed by a magnitude 5.7 and magnitude 5.9 aftershocks. Hours later, a magnitude 6.3 earthquake was reported on the northeast side of the island.

The citizens of the Indonesian city of Surabaya also reported some after effects. Surabaya is located about 200 kilometers from the quake's epicenter.

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