Shallow M6.0 earthquake hits Samoa Islands region

Shallow M6.0 earthquake hits Samoa Islands region

A shallow earthquake registered by the USGS as M6.0 hit the Samoa Islands / Tonga region at 16:06 UTC on March 17, 2020. The agency is reporting a depth of 10 km (6.2 miles). The USGS initially reported it as M5.8. EMSC still reports it as M5.8 at a depth of 9 km (5.6 miles).

The epicenter was located 177 km (110 miles) E oh Hihifo, Tonga and 239 km (149 miles) SW of Tafuna, American Samoa.

There are no people living within 100 km (62 miles).

The USGS issued a green alert for shaking-related fatalities and economic losses.

Overall, the population in this region resides in structures that are a mix of vulnerable and earthquake-resistant construction. The predominant vulnerable building types are unknown/miscellaneous types and concrete/cinder block masonry construction.

Image credit: Google, TW/SAM

Regional seismicity

Featured image credit: Google, TW/SAM


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