Increased Earthquake Activity in Asia

A burst of earthquake activity has rattled Asian regions from Indonesia through the Philippines to Japan and up into the Aleutian Islands during the past two days, with events as large as magnitude 6.9 among the list of seventeen quakes.

Earthquake activity in the Aleutian Islands began with a magnitude 5.7 earthquake just after 6 p.m. New Zealand time on the evening of Sunday the 2nd of March 2008. Three further quakes with magnitudes between 4.4 and 5.0 occurred over the next 16 hours and activity continues at lower magnitudes.

Japan and the Kuril Islands have experienced six earthquakes during the past two days, culminating in a magnitude 6.6 quake in the Kuril Islands at half-past ten last night, New Zealand time. The quakes are occurring at various depths.

Of the four quakes in the Philippines, all have been shallow, with the strongest event a magnitude 6.9 quake which struck this morning (Tuesday 4th) at 5:11 a.m. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre advises that a tsunami was not generated by this 19 km deep undersea quake.

Three events have been reported in Indonesian territory where earthquake activity has been occurring in recent weeks. A shallow magnitude 6.1 quake struck the Kepulauan Mentawai region on the afternoon of March 3rd and a shallow magnitude 5.7 tremor struck southern Sumatra just before 7 o’clock this morning. Another shallow earthquake of magnitude 5.4 struck southern Sumatra just after ten o’clock this morning.

The earthquake activity is occurring near the boundaries of several tectonic plates, including the Pacific, Eurasian, Philippine, and Australian plates.

[Compiled from data supplied by the U.S. Geological Survey and its contributing agencies.]

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