7.3 Magnitude Earthquake Jolts Indonesia
Jakarta: A 7.3-magnitude struck Indonesia Tuesday, with monitors briefly issuing a warning of the possibility of hazardous tsunami waves.
However, the threat was later lifted.
The epicentre was north of the island of Flores in Indonesia’s East Nusa Tenggara province, where the quake sparked terror after hitting in the late morning (0320 GMT).
“I was in the field. People ran in panic. I am still… scared,” said Nuraini, a resident of Adonara island in the East Flores regency.
No significant damage or deaths were immediately reported from the areas where the quake was felt, but authorities urged caution.
“In the locations closest to the epicentre… It’s still safe there, there has been no damage,” East Flores district head Antonius Hubertus Gege Hadjon told Metro TV.
But “when the earthquake happened, everybody fled their homes.”
Indonesian authorities have urged residents of affected areas to not panic but seek a safe location away from the shore.
“I was checking my phone when the quake hit. I felt it for 30 seconds. It was strong,” said Alwan, a resident of Buton in Southeast Sulawesi — one of the areas where a tsunami warning was issued.
The quake struck in the Flores Sea at a depth of 18.5 kilometres (11 miles), the USGS said, detecting the epicentre around 100 kilometres north of the town of Maumere.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said the quake no longer posed a threat of tsunamis after earlier warning that such waves were possible within a 1,000 km radius of the epicentre.