A 7.3-magnitude earthquake has struck the Molucca Sea near Indonesia on Friday.
A tsunami warning was issued after the quake hit.
After the quake, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center noted there was a possibility of a tsunami and “hazardous” waves hitting the coast.
The US Geological Survey confirmed that the quake hit approximately 46 km northwest of Kota Ternate in the Molucca islands.
Tsunamis could hit Philippines, Palau, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, as well as in some parts of Japan and Taiwan, the Center added.
The tsunami could hit in about five hours but the Center stipulated “he initial wave may not be the largest.”
Here’s the AP update:
7.3 quake hits Indonesia waters; tsunami possible
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — A 7.3-magnitude quake hit Indonesian waters Saturday morning and has the potential to generate tsunami waves along nearby coasts, a monitoring agency said.
According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the quake hit 154 kilometers (96 miles) northwest of Kota Ternate at a depth of 47 kilometers (29 miles).
There are no immediate reports of casualties or damage.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said the quake could cause hazardous tsunami waves within 300 kilometers (186 miles) of the epicenter along the nearby coasts of Indonesia and the southern Philippines. Waves could reach up to a meter (3.28 feet) or less, it said.
The nearest communities of Tabukan Tengah on North Sulawesi island could be at risk within an hour or so if a tsunami occurs, the agency said.
The waves could also reach as far as Taiwan, Okinawa in southern Japan, the U.S. territory of Guam, Papau New Guinea, Solomon Islands and the Marshall Islands in the Pacific within the next six hours, it said.
The world’s largest archipelago, Indonesia is prone to earthquakes due to its location on the Pacific “Ring of Fire,” an arc of volcanoes and fault lines in the Pacific Basin.
In 2004, a monster temblor off Aceh shores triggered a tsunami that killed 230,000 people in a dozen countries. Most of the deaths were in Aceh.