South Pacific Earthquakes

A burst of earthquake activity rippled through the South Pacific overnight, with quakes striking Tonga, Fiji and the Kermadec Islands.

The activity began with a magnitude 5.2 earthquake near Tonga at 6:36 p.m. on Sunday the 21st of September 2008 New Zealand time. The quake was located 30 km south-south-west of Hihifo (570 km north-north-east of the capital Nuku’Alofa) at a depth of 74 km.

Four very deep quakes in the Fiji islands followed. A magnitude 4.4 quake at 7:11 p.m. was followed by another magnitude 4.4 quake at 7:45 p.m. A magnitude 4.5 quake struck the southern Fiji islands just after midnight and a magnitude 4.4 event was recorded at 4:23 this morning. All of the Fiji quakes were at depths between 520 and 585 km.

A magnitude 5.2 quake struck the Kermadec Islands at 6:50 this morning. The quake was located 105 km west of L’Esperance Rock (310 km south-west of Raoul Island) at a depth of 320 km.

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

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