4 Jan 2010

Solomons on alert after quakes off Gizo

3:38 pm on 4 January 2010

The Solomon Islands disaster management office is calling on residents to be on alert following two powerful earthquakes this morning.

A 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck near Gizo, an hour after a 6.5 magnitude tremor.

The office's programme management officer, Julian Makaa, says a small tsunami was created on Rendova Island, but there are no reports of any major damage.

Mr Makaa says they issued no tsunami warning, but are in radio contact with the area.

"We've sent out an alert message for the communities in the most affected areas, especially the Western Province, parts of Choiseul, Isabel, and the western coast of Guadalcanal, including the Russell Islands, just to be on alert, and keep a look out on the sea/tide fluctuations."

Julian Makaa says aftershocks could cause landslides.