JAYAPURA (TIP): A 7.2 earthquake struck the eastern Indonesian province of Papua, the US Geological Survey said, sending panicked crowds running into the streets. There were no immediate reports of damage and no tsunami warning was issued after the quake struck on land at 1.42pm local time today at a depth of 75km, 272km west-southwest of provincial capital Jayapura, the USGS said. ”Based on all available data a destructive Pacific-wide tsunami is not expected and there is no tsunami threat to Hawaii,” the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre has posted on its website.
Local seismologists had measured the quake at 7.2. People in the area told AFP they felt the quake strongly and hundreds went running into the streets, witnesses told AFP. Narsi Bay said she was in a meeting on the first floor of a hotel in Jayapura when she felt ”strong shaking”. ”I went downstairs to go outside as quickly as I could as I was afraid that the building would collapse”. An official from the country’s meteorology, climatology and geophysics agency said the quake happened on land and there was no tsunami threat. ”We haven’t received any reports of damage.” Indonesia sits on the Pacific ”Ring of Fire” where continental plates collide, causing frequent seismic and volcanic activity.