Earthquake 6.1 magnitude hits Solomon Islands

July 29th, 2008 - 11:01 am ICT by Bupha Ravirot  

An earthquake measuring 6.1 Richter shaken Solomon Islands on Monday, July 28, 2008 at 21:40:53 UTC, (Tuesday 08:40:53 AM local time) but there was no immediate reports of damage or injuries.

The epicenter of the earth quake is located at 10.582°S, 163.146°E at a depth of 52.8 km. The epicenter is 135 km E from Kira Kira, San Cristobal, 295 km W from Lata, Santa Cruz Islands, 370 km ESE from Honiara, Guadalcanal from Solomon Islands and 2145 km NNE from Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

On 2 April 2007, the Solomon Islands were struck by a major earthquake followed by a large tsunami. Initial reports indicated that the tsunami, which mainly affected the small island of Gizo, was several metres in height (perhaps as high as 10 metres (39 ft) according to some reports, 5 metres (16 1/3 ft) according to the Foreign Office). The tsunami was triggered by an 8.1 magnitude earthquake, with an epicenter 217 miles (349 km) northwest of the island’s capital, Honiara, at Lat -8.453 Long 156.957 and at a depth of 10 kilometres (6.2 miles).

According to the United States Geologic Survey the earthquake struck at 20:39:56 UTC on Sunday, 1 April 2007. Since the initial event and up until 22:00:00 UTC on Wednesday, 4 April 2007, more than 44 aftershocks of a magnitude of 5.0 or greater were recorded in the region.

The death toll from the resulting tsunami was at least 52 people, and the tsunami destroyed more than 900 homes and has left thousands of people homeless.

Land thrust from the quake has extended out from the shoreline of one island, Ranongga, by up to 70 meters (230 ft) according to local residents. This has left many once pristine coral reefs exposed on the newly formed beaches.

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