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Archive for the ‘Gizo’ Category

Powerful Aftershocks Still Striking Solomon Isles

Posted by feww on January 6, 2010

Aftershocks Continue to Strike Solomon Islands

Seven fishermen from Viru in the Western Province were reported missing amid continuing aftershocks, the Solomon Star newspaper reported. The seven have not been seen since Monday’s mainshock and tsunami.

As of posting, 8 more aftershock Measuring greater than M5.0 have struck near the epicenter of the mainshock that occurred on January 4. See:

The largest of these aftershocks measured up to 7.2Mw.

The Solomon Islands region, which comprises a section of the Pacific Ring of Fire, is particularly prone to earthquakes because of the above average rate of convergence of the Australia and Pacific tectonic plates in the region.

The down-going slab of the Australian plate is overridden by leading edge of the Pacific Plate at a rate of about 10 cm/yr near the location where the shocks occurred.

As the subducting plate is forced into the earth’s mantle, the more brittle areas of the crust is crushed resulting in the release of stress energy—earthquakes.


Damage from Monday’s mainshock and tsunami to an unidentified village in the Western Province of the Solomon Islands. Credit: Regional Assistance Mission To Solomon Islands (handout via Reuters).


Earthquake location Map. Source: USGS/EHP. Enhanced by FEWW.

Details of the largest aftershock:

  • Magnitude: 6.9 [Maximum EQ magnitude estimated at 7.2 Mw by FireEarth – USGS/EHP may be systematically downgrading earthquakes by an average of 0.3Mw, probably for political reasons]
  • Date-Time:
    • Tuesday, January 05, 2010 at 12:15:36 UTC
    • Tuesday, January 05, 2010 at 11:15:36 PM at epicenter
  • Location: 8.886°S, 157.522°E
  • Depth: 35 km (21.7 miles) set by location program
  • Region:  SOLOMON ISLANDS
  • Distances:
    • 115 km (70 miles) SE of Gizo, New Georgia Islands, Solomon Isl.
    • 190 km (120 miles) WSW of Dadali, Santa Isabel, Solomon Islands
    • 275 km (170 miles) WNW of HONIARA, Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands
    • 2115 km (1310 miles) NNE of BRISBANE, Queensland, Australia
  • Location Uncertainty:  horizontal +/- 7.2 km (4.5 miles)
  • Source:  USGS NEIC (WDCS-D)
  • Event ID: us2010rca2

Tsunami Evaluation:

No tsunami reported.

Related Links:

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Solomon Isles Tsunami Destroyed Several Villages

Posted by feww on January 5, 2010

UPDATED Jan 6, 2010

Solomon Isles villages destroyed by tsunami, 9 additional aftershocks strike region

As of posting, at least three villages on Solomon Isles are believed to have been destroyed or damaged by a tsunami, 9 additional aftershocks, 8 of which measured greater than M5.0, have struck near the epicenter of the mainshock.

Main Entry: Powerful Earthquakes Strike Solomon Islands


Deep scars on the hillside caused by Monday’s mainshock  in the Western Province of the Solomon Islands. Credit: Regional Assistance Mission To Solomon Islands (handout via Reuters).

  • The mainshock which struck  on Sunday, January 03, 2010 at 22:37 UTC generated a 3-m high,  destructive tsunami.
  • The tsunami slammed on the shores of Rendova Island and neighboring Tetepare Island at about 9:30 am local time on Monday (UTC + 11:00 Hours)
  • At least 3 villages have been devastated, or damaged.
  • Up to 70 homes on Baniata village on Rendova Island were reported as destroyed or damaged.
  • The final damage toll may be much higher, local authorities said.
  • No death or injuries reported because tsunami occurred during the day and the residents managed to flee to higher grounds.
  • 9 additional aftershocks, 8 of which measured greater than M5.0, have struck near the epicenter of the mainshock.
  • The largest of the aftershocks measured up to 6.4Mw, and struck at a depth of about 35km some 35 km  SE of Gizo (8.346°S, 157.067°E), New Georgia Islands, Solomon Isles on Monday, January 04, 2010 at 11:28 UTC.
  • The latest aftershocks sent frightened villagers in the Western province of Solomon Islands again running to higher grounds fearing another tsunami.
  • Landslides were reported on Rendova and Tetepari islands.
  • Seven fishermen are reported missing.
  • No serious injuries reported.
  • About a third of the island of Rendova’s population of 3,500 people have been affected after more than 200 “houses” were destroyed.

Related Links:

Posted in earthquake, earthquake 2010, Gizo, Solomon tsunami, tsunami damage | Tagged: , , , , , , | 2 Comments »