Papua New Guinea - Earthquake OCHA Situation Report No. 1
OCHA Situation Report No. 1
Papua New Guinea - Earthquake
16 November 2000
1. Two strong earthquakes hit New Britain and New Ireland region in Papua New Guinea in the afternoon on 16 November 2000. (local time). According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), the first earthquake measured 8.0 on the Richter scale with the epicentre situated at latitude 3.9 degrees South and longitude 152.3 degrees East, approximately 30 km north-northeast of Rabaul in New Britain. Its origin time was 4.54 hrs GMT or 14.54 hrs local time on 16 November. About 3 hours after the first tremor (7.42 hrs GMT or 17.42 hrs local time), a second strong earthquake with the magnitude of 7.7 on the Richter scale struck the same region. Its epicentre was situated at latitude 5.2 degrees South and longitude 153.0 degrees East. According to the West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center (WC&ATWC), following the earthquakes, no destructive tsunami has occurred, however, a regional minor tsunami was reported at Kokopo in New Britain.
2. While there has been no confirmed report of major damage and casualties so far, initial media reports indicate that the first earthquake caused damage to property in the town of Rabaul and a tsunami triggered by the tremor crashed ashore and damaged a supermarket and other buildings.
3. OCHA is in close contact with the UN Resident Coordinator's Office in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea and will revert with further information if the situation warrants it.
4. No request for international assistance has been received by OCHA to date.
Telephone: +41-22-917 12 34
Fax: +41-22-917 00 23
In case of emergency only: Tel. +41-22-917 20 10
Desk Officers: Ms. S. Metzner-Strack
/ Mr. R. Mueller / Mr. S. Matsuka
Direct Tel. +41-22-917 21 44 / 31 31 / 40 34
Press contact: (in GVA) Mr. Donato Kiniger-Passigli, direct Tel. +41-22-917 26 53 - (in N.Y.) Ms. Phyllis Lee, direct Tel. +1-212-963 48 32
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