11 Sep 2008

Quakes in Indonesia and Japan

1:47 pm on 11 September 2008

Indonesia's meteorology agency lifted a tsunami warning issued on Thursday after a strong undersea earthquake measuring 7.6 on the Richter scale hit the eastern Moluccas islands.

The US Geological Survey put the magnitude at 6.6 and depth at 93 km. The quake struck around 9 am local time, and there were no immediate reports of damage or casualties.

An earthquake that struck off the coast of Japan's northernmost main island of Hokkaido on Thursday had a preliminary magnitude of 7.

There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage, and a 10 cm tsunami was observed on the Japanese coast.

The tremor was centred off the coast of Tokachi on Hokkaido, about 800 km north of Tokyo, at a depth of 20 km, the Japan Meteorological Agency said.

Earthquakes are common in Japan, one of the world's most seismically active areas. The country accounts for about 20% of the world's earthquakes of magnitude 6 or greater.