Strong Quake, New Britain, PNG

Another strong earthquake struck the New Britain region of Papua New Guinea this morning.

Wednesday 21st July 2010

A magnitude 6.3 earthquake struck 70 km south-east of Kimbe in the New Britain region of Papua New Guinea at 7:18 this morning New Zealand time. The quake, which was centred 550 km north-east of the capital Port Moresby, was 36 km deep according to the U.S. Geological Survey. Their analysis puts the quake beneath the central part of New Britain island.

Geoscience Australia reports the quake as magnitude 6.5 at a depth of 60 km. It estimates that the quake would have caused damage within 60 km of the epicentre, which includes the central part of New Britain island, and would have been felt up to 750 km away. Geoscience Australia puts the epicentre on the southern coast of New Britain island.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre issued a bulletin at 7:27 a.m. New Zealand time reporting the quake as magnitude 6.6 at a depth of 56 km. It advises that a destructive widespread tsunami threat does not exist based on historical data, but a local wave could have been generated by such an event.

Today’s earthquake continues a series that began early on Monday morning with two earthquakes of magnitude 6.9 and 7.3. Aftershocks since then have included five of magnitude 5 and three of magnitude 4. A magnitude 5.6 aftershock followed this morning’s magnitude 6.3 event.

[Compiled from data supplied by the U.S. Geological Survey and its contributing agencies, the U.S. National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration’s Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre, and Geoscience Australia.]

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