Major Earthquake Hits Pacific Nation Of Vanuatu

Earthquake Cyclone Pam, March 22, 2015

The Pacific nation of Vanuatu was struck by a 7.0 magnitude earthquake early on Friday prompting a tsunami warning.

Minor sea level fluctuations of up to 0.3 metres have been predicted by the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre (PTWC) for the next few hours.

The earthquake hit the Vanuatu island of Malekula, 64 kilometres south south-east of Luganville. It prompted a Tsunami warning which was later cancelled when no significant damage was reported.

ABC Australia reports:

The sparsely populated village of Norsup was one kilometre from its epicentre, which struck on land at a depth of 35 kilometres, the US Geological Survey said.

The PTWC earlier advised people located near coastal areas, within 300 kilometres of the epicentre, to stay alert for information and follow instructions from national and local authorities.

Waves measuring one to three metres above the tide level were possible along Vanuatu coasts.

The alert was also in force for New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands for damaging waves.

There was no threat of a Pacific-wide tsunami, the PTWC said.

Staff at the Bauerfield International Airport told Pacific Beat they felt the quake, but damage to the capital, Port Vila, was unlikely.Eartquake

Edmondo Burr

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