Magnitude 7.5 quake in South Pacific triggers tsunami threat

July 18, 2015 12:17 pm

A tsunami threat was canceled today after a strong earthquake struck
the Santa Cruz Islands in the South Pacific and no damage or casualties
were reported.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said the quake measured 6.9, down from a preliminary magnitude of 7.5.

It
hit at a depth of 33 kilometers and was centered undersea 75 kilometers
northwest of Lata in the eastern Solomon Islands, where the Santa Cruz
Islands are located.
The Santa Cruz Islands are about 2,252 kilometers (1,400 miles) northeast of Brisbane, Australia.
The
quake wasn’t felt in the Solomons’ capital, Honiara, said Janes
Ginting, the Solomon Islands country director for the World Vision aid
group.
Ginting had not heard any reports of damage elsewhere,
though he was still trying to make contact with disaster officials and
World Vision staffers in Lata.

The Solomons comprise more than 200 islands with a population of about 552,000 people.
The
islands lie on the “Ring of Fire” – an arc that stretches around the
Pacific rim and where about 90 percent of the world’s quakes occur.
A
magnitude 8 quake near Lata in February 2013 generated a tsunami up to
1.5 meters high that damaged dozens of homes and left several people
dead on the western side of the Santa Cruz.
More than 50 people
were killed and thousands lost their homes in April 2007, when a
magnitude-8.1 quake hit the western Solomon Islands, sending waves
crashing into coastal villages.

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