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Earthquake of 8 magnitude strikes Papua New Guinea

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A powerful earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 7.9 has rocked the northern region of the Solomon Islands. A tsunami warning has been issued in both the region, Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea.
The earthquake struck at 3:30 p.m. local time on Sunday, It was centered about 42 kilometers (26 miles) northwest of Panguna, a town on Bougainville Island that is located northeast of mainland Papua New Guinea and is geographically part of the Solomon Islands archipelago.

Both the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center and the United States Geological Survey (USGS) given the magnitude of the earthquake at 7.9, down from initial estimates of 8.4 and 8.0. It informed that the quake struck at a depth of about 136 kilometres (84 miles), making it a relatively deep earthquake.

A tsunami alert that was initially issued for Nauru, Pohnpei, Kosrae, Vanuatu, Chuuk and Indonesia has been cancelled. Those areas, as well as other countries across the Pacific basin, could experience non-damaging tsunami waves of up to 30 centimetres (1 feet).

“Overall, the population in this region resides in structures that are vulnerable to earthquake shaking, though some resistant structures exist,” the USGS said in its assessment. “Some casualties and damage are possible and the impact should be relatively localised.”

The Solomon Islands are on the so-called ‘Pacific Ring of Fire’, an arc of fault lines circling the Pacific Basin that is prone to frequent and large earthquakes. The Solomon Islands arc experiences a very high level of earthquake activity, and many tremors of magnitude 7 and larger have been recorded since the early decades of the twentieth century.

Earlier on April 2, 2007, a major 8.1-magnitude earthquake struck near the New Georgia Islands of the Solomon Islands. It unleashed a regional tsunami, killing 52 people and destroying more than 300 homes, schools and a hospital at Sasamunga. Two people were killed as a result of landslides, which were triggered by the earthquake.

 

 Wefornews Bureau

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Disaster

Tourists raise over $11,000 for Guatemala volcano victims

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Gautemala Volcano Eruption

Guatemala City, June 16: Tourists from a Japanese cruise ship that docked in Guatemala this week have raised more than $11,000 for those affected by the eruption of the Fuego volcano in the Central American country.

The ship, Asuka II, arrived in Puerto Quetzal on the country’s Pacific coast on June 11 and at the initiative of the crew and the passengers, the funds were raised, reports Efe news.

The passengers and crew made a gesture of “fraternity and solidarity” with the people of Guatemala in the face of the tragedy and natural disaster caused by the eruption of the volcano, the Japanese embassy here said in a statement on Friday.

The Fuego volcano suffered its biggest eruption in recent years on June 3, leaving 110 dead and almost 200 missing, in addition to causing significant material damage.

On Friday, the volcano produced seven explosions per hour and small pyroclastic flows.

Guatemala’s National Institute for Seismology, Volcanology, Meteorology and Hydrology said that the volcano, located some 50 km west of the capital, has been producing between five and seven moderate explosions per hour and has belched out ash clouds rising 4,700 metres into the air.

IANS

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Himachal Pradesh: Earthquake of magnitude 4.5 strikes Chamba

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New Delhi, June 14: An earthquake of magnitude 4.5 on the Richter Scale hit Himachal Pradesh on Thursday. The quake was reported at Chamba region.

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Guatemala volcano eruption toll reaches 114

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Gautemala Volcano Eruption

Guatemala City, June 12:  The death toll from the eruption of the Fuego volcano in Guatemala on June 3 has increased to 114 after another four bodies were found, according to authorities.

Conred national disaster coordinator brigades, firefighters, army troops and international experts – aided by surviving local residents – on Monday entered so-called “Ground Zero” in the community of San Miguel Los Lotes, in Escuintla province, which was buried under volcanic ash and devastated by pyroclastic flows, reports Efe news.

Using picks and other tools, along with some heavy machinery, recovery brigades found the four bodies in the ruins of the village and under the tonnes of volcanic material.

The victims appeared to be members of a family.

The area reeks of sulfer and recent rains have hardened the pyroclastic flows of volcanic material that have moved down the mountain’s slopes.

Authorities say there is zero possibility of finding any survivors in the devastated areas.

Conred said that because of rainy conditions, search operations were suspended on Monday but will resume on Tuesday.

Insivumeh also reported that volcanic activity within the mountain continues, including frequent and abundant emanations of ash and gas and up to nine explosions per hour, activity that is causing repeated avalanches of fine ash and other material along the southeastern flank.

Health Minister Carlos Soto said that the more than 4,000 people being housed in shelters are being attended to by private organisations such as the Rotary Club.

According to volcanologists, eruption records of Fuego, one of the country’s most active volcanoes, dates back to 1542.

IANS

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