Increased Quake Activity in the South Pacific

Earthquake activity in the south-west of the Pacific Ocean has increased this week. Fifteen quakes of magnitude 5 or greater have been reported from the Solomon Islands, Santa Cruz Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji, Tonga, the Kermadecs, and New Zealand.

The week began with a magnitude 5.0 quake in the Solomon Islands on the morning of the 29th of August, New Zealand time. This was followed by a magnitude 4.8 quake on the evening of the 30th. Another quake of magnitude 5.2 struck the Solomons just after midnight on September 4th.

Two quakes struck the Santa Cruz Islands on the evening of September 4th. The deep quakes of magnitude 5.1 and 5.6 were separated by three minutes.

A 48-km deep quake of magnitude 5.2 struck near Vanuatu on the morning of September the 3rd (New Zealand time).

Two quakes struck near Tonga during the week. A magnitude 5.2 quake was reported late on the evening of September 1st and a magnitude 5.4 event the following morning.

A rapid series of three quakes was reported near Fiji on the evening of September 1st. Quakes of magnitude 5.1, 5.2 and 5.7 struck over a period of less than 2 hours, with one of the quakes being very deep at 555 km while the other two were 20 km or shallower.

A magnitude 5.1 quake in the Kermadec Islands on the evening of August 30th was followed by a magnitude 6.0 quake in the northern part of the island group on the afternoon of September 1st. Another quake struck the Kermadecs this morning, September 5th. This magnitude 5.4 quake was located in the southern part of the group, near L’Esperance Rock.

As mentioned in other reports on Wild Land, two quakes of 5th magnitude have struck New Zealand during the week. They were a magnitude 5.8 event located near Lake Taupo on the 1st of September and a magnitude 5.0 earthquake near Hanmer Springs mid-afternoon today.

[Compiled from data provided by the U.S. Geological Survey and its contributing agencies; and the GeoNet project and its sponsors EQC, GNS Science and FRST.]

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