Tsunami warning issued for parts of Pacific after earthquake

A powerful earthquake rattled the South Pacific nation of Papua New Guinea on Monday, prompting officials to issue a tsunami warning for vast swathes of the Pacific and as far north as Russia.The magnitude-7.7 earthquake struck at a depth of 65 kilometres, about 50 kilometres southeast of the town of Kokopo in northeastern Papua New Guinea, the U.S. Geological Survey said. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said hazardous tsunami waves could hit coasts located within 1,000 kilometres of Kokopo, with waves between 1 to 3 metres possible for Papua New Guinea. Farther afield, tsunami waves of less than 0.3 metres could hit other Pacific island nations, Russia, China, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Indonesia, Hawaii, Mexico, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Chile and Antarctica later Monday, the tsunami warning center said.

The situation seems to be under control at this stage.

Martin Mose, acting director for Papua New Guinea’s National Disaster Center

Officials in the capital, Port Moresby, were working to contact their counterparts in the outer provinces, but there had been no reports of damage or injuries within an hour of the quake striking. The quake caused strong shaking and knocked items off shelves in Kokopo, but had not prompted any immediate reports of damage, said Chris McKee, assistant director of the Geophysical Observatory in Port Moresby. A few people in the capital reported feeling the quake as well, he said.