July 21, 2024
Magnitude 5.7 earthquake strikes just south of Hawaii's Big Island, U.S. Geological Survey says

Magnitude 5.7 earthquake strikes just south of Hawaii’s Big Island, U.S. Geological Survey says

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A magnitude 5.7 earthquake struck the world’s largest active volcano on Feb. 9, 2024, Mauna Loa on the Big Island of Hawaii, knocking items off shelves in nearby towns but not immediately prompting reports of serious damage. File

A magnitude 5.7 earthquake struck the world’s largest active volcano on Feb. 9, 2024, Mauna Loa on the Big Island of Hawaii, knocking items off shelves in nearby towns but not immediately prompting reports of serious damage. File
| Photo Credit: AP

The U.S. Geological Survey said on Feb. 9 that a magnitude 5.7 earthquake struck just south of the Big Island of Hawaii.

The earthquake, which the USGS initially reported as magnitude 6.3 before downgrading it, was centered 11 miles (18 kilometres) south of Naalehu, Hawaii, at a depth of 6 miles (10 kilometres). The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said no tsunami was expected.

Some shaking could be felt in Honolulu on the island of Oahu which is about 200 miles (322 kilometres) to the north.

“Many areas may have experienced strong shaking,” from the earthquake that occurred shortly after 10 a.m. local time, the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency posted on X. It also reiterated that there was no threat of a tsunami.

Big Island Mayor Mitch Roth was in Honolulu at a cardiologist appointment. “All of a sudden I felt like I was getting dizzy,” he said, thinking at first that it was the procedure and then realising it was an earthquake. He immediately got on the phone with his emergency management officials.

“We’ll probably start hearing about damage in the next hour to an hour,” Mr. Roth said, pointing out that it was “a good sized earthquake” and that from what he’s heard, there is no tsunami threat.

Mr. Roth said he was headed to the Honolulu airport to try to get an earlier flight back to the Big Island.

Julia Neal, the owner of Pahala Plantation Cottages, said a mirror and brass lamp fell down during some forceful shaking. “We have a lot of the old wooden plantations homes and so they were rattling pretty loudly.” Derek Nelson, the manager of the Kona Canoe Club restaurant in the Kona Inn Shopping Village in the oceanside community of Kona, on the island’s western side, said everyone felt it “big time,” but that there was no damage.

“I mean, it shook us bad to where it wobbled some knees a little bit. It shook all the windows in the village,” he said.

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