A powerful 7-magnitude earthquake hits the Solomon Islands… and a tsunami warning
A powerful magnitude 7 earthquake struck the Solomon Islands on Tuesday, causing buildings to shake and pieces of furniture to fall out of place, according to eyewitnesses, while the Pacific Tsunami Early Warning Center warned of the danger of a flood wave.
“It was a strong earthquake. Some items in the hotel fell to the ground. Everyone seems to be fine but they are panicking,” Joy Nisha, a hotel receptionist in the capital Honiara, told AFP.
According to the US Geological Survey, the quake struck at a depth of 15 km, about 16 km southwest of Malango District.
For its part, the Pacific Tsunami Early Warning Center warned of the risk of high tsunami exposure on the archipelago’s coasts, which are within 300 km of the epicenter.
According to an AFP correspondent in Honiara, the earthquake lasted about 20 seconds.
“We are advising people to move to a higher level now,” George Herming, a spokesman for Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare’s office, told Reuters. But he added that there was no major damage to buildings in central Honiara, the Pacific nation’s capital.
The reporter confirmed that the earthquake caused power outages in some neighborhoods, while residents rushed outside, leaving coastal areas to higher ground.
Initially, the US Geological Survey announced that the earthquake had reached a magnitude of 7.3, but it soon reduced the number to 7 degrees.
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