Strong Quake, Tonga

A strong undersea earthquake struck near Tonga this afternoon.

Saturday 12th March 2011

A magnitude 6.1 earthquake struck 106 km south-east of Hihifo, 229 km north-north-east of Neiafu, Tonga at 2:19 this afternoon, New Zealand Daylight Time. The undersea quake was centred 355 km south-south-west of Apia, Samoa at a depth of 11 km, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

A magnitude 5.7 foreshock struck the same area one minute earlier at 2:18 p.m. but was deeper at 32 km.

In a preliminary report, Geoscience Australia reports the main event as magnitude 5.7 at a depth of 27 km. It estimates that it would have been felt up to 300 km from the epicentre.

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

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