Magnitude 7.5 quake hits off Papua New Guinea
May 15, 2019 3:37 pm
A strong, shallow earthquake in Papua New Guinea has collapsed houses, cut power to thousands and sent residents fleeing into the streets.
The magnitude 7.5 quake – at a depth of 10km – hit offshore about 50km east of Rabaul in Papua New Guinea’s New Britain Island on Tuesday just before 11pm local time.
It triggered an initial tsunami warning, though local officials said no waves were observed nor any casualties yet reported, with a full assessment of damage not possible until daybreak.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center also said it had not detected any waves, and the threat had passed.
Namatanai district on New Ireland is the populated area closest to the epicentre.
The MP for Namatanai, says preliminary reports from his district indicate the violent shaking caused numerous houses in Konoagil sub-district to fall over.
He says no deaths have been reported but is waiting for a more extensive report from a district team that has been dispatched to assess the damage.