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Earthquake

Powerful Quake Hits Papua New Guinea, Tsunami Alert Issued

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CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — A powerful earthquake has stuck Papua New Guinea, triggering a tsunami alert for the country and for the nearby Solomon Islands.


The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake measured magnitude 7.5 and was centered 45 kilometers (28 miles) northeast of Kokopo. It said it struck at a relatively shallow depth of 10 kilometers (6 miles).

Shallow earthquakes tend to cause more damage on the Earth’s surface, but the USGS estimated that damage and injuries would be low because of the sparse population.

Papua New Guinea is located on the eastern half of the island of New Guinea, to the east of Indonesia.

It sits on the Pacific’s “Ring of Fire,” the arc of seismic faults around the Pacific Ocean where most of the world’s earthquakes and volcanic activity occur.

Earthquake

11 Killed, 24 Missing In Major Philippines Earthquake, Multiple Aftershocks Have Occurred

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PORAC, Philippines (AP) — Officials say rescuers have found more bodies overnight in the rubble of a supermarket that crashed down in a powerful earthquake that damaged buildings and an airport in the northern Philippines. The death toll is now 11, and 24 people are missing.


Mayor Condralito dela Cruz said the bodies of four victims were pulled from Chuzon Supermarket in the town of Porac.

Rescuers used cranes, crowbars and sniffer dogs to look for people in the rubble, some of whom were yelling for help.

Authorities inserted a tube to blow in oxygen in the hope of helping people pinned there to breathe. On Tuesday morning, rescuers pulled out a man alive, sparking cheers. A Porac councilor told The Associated Press another victim was expected to be pulled out alive soon.

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Earthquake

7.5 Magnitude Earthquake Hits Ecuador/Peru Border

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QUITO/LIMA, Feb 22 (Reuters) – A deep magnitude-7.5 earthquake struck the Peru-Ecuador border region early on Friday morning, the U.S. Geological Survey said, causing tremors that the Ecuadorian president said were felt around the country.

The quake’s epicenter was in a sparsely populated area 224 km (140 miles) east-southeast of Ambato, Ecuador, at a depth of 132 km. The USGS’s initial reading assessed the quake, which occurred at 5:17 a.m. local time (1017 GMT), at magnitude 7.7.

There was no risk of a tsunami being triggered, according to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center, and there were no initial reports of casualties or damage.

Ecuadorian President Lenin Moreno said on Twitter that preliminary reports “do not indicate major damage,” though he added that provincial response teams had been activated and that the tremors had been “felt throughout the country.”

One resident in Cuenca, Ecuador, 253 km (157 miles) from the epicenter, described the temblor as very strong, while a second resident there reported experiencing “a good 30-second shake,” according to witness statements on the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre website.

Ecuador’s emergency response service said the main quake and other smaller ones had shook the south of the country with reports of some minor injuries, evacuation of patients and staff from several hospitals and damage reported in some Amazonian towns.

Some areas were without electrical power, authorities said, while the country’s oil pipelines and hydroelectric dams were operating normally.

In towns near the epicenter of the quake, the tremors caused alarm. “I felt the walls and the floor move. I was very scared and we went out to the street,” Lissette Alarcón, a 25-year-old university student, told Reuters.

“We still aren’t used to these earthquakes,” she said.

A magnitude-7.1 earthquake struck Peru’s southern coast in January 2018, killing one person, injuring scores more and causing roads and homes to collapse. A 7.8-magnitude quake in Ecuador killed around 700 people in 2016. (Reporting by Mitra Taj in Lima, Alexandra Valencia in Quito and Jason Neely and John Stonestreet in London; Writing by Adam Jourdan; Editing by Alison Williams and Jeffrey Benkoe)

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