Large magnitude 7.8 earthquake, aftershock strikes Vanuatu region

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Location of Vanuatu within the South Pacific

According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), a magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck the Vanuatu region in the Pacific Ocean on Wednesday. The quake was followed by a large aftershock with a magnitude of 7.3.

So far there are no reports of damage or injuries.

Both of the quakes' epicenters were centered roughly 373 kilometres northwest of the Vanuatu city of Santu, at a depth of 33 kilometres.

Vanuatu was placed under a tsunami warning after the earthquake started, however, it has since been removed, as the tremors managed to produce only small waves.

The earthquake comes a week after another heavy tremor caused tsunamis in the South Pacific. That quake killed 170 people on the islands of Tonga, Samoa, and American Samoa.