Solomon Islands

Solomon Islands: Earthquake - Information Bulletin n° 1


This bulletin is being issued for information only and reflects the current situation and details available at this time. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is not seeking funding or other assistance from donors for this operation. The Solomon Island Red Cross Society (SIRCS) will, however, accept direct assistance to provide support to the affected population.

The situation

A very strong undersea earthquake of magnitude 8.0 occurred at 4.39am about 62 kilometers west-southwest of Kirakira, Makira Ulawa Province in the Solomon Islands. Shaking was strongly felt in Makira, south of Malaita, north of Guadalcanal and in Rennel & Bellona. Tsunami was observed in Makira.

Tsunami Warning and Watch advice initially issued immediately following the earthquake for Makira, Temotu, Malaita, Rennel & Bellona, Central Islands, South Guadalcanal provinces, was cancelled at 9.30am. An “all clear” message was issued by National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) at 10.25am.

A Pacific-wide Tsunami alert was initially issued for Vanuatu, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Tuvalu, Kosrae - a chapter of the Federated States of Micronesia, and New Caledonia in the morning but was cancelled shortly after 7.55am Fiji time.

In the several hours following the earthquake, the Solomon Islands experienced ten significant aftershocks ranging from 4.5M to 5.5M. The National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) activated its National Emergency Operation Center (NEOC) in the capital city Honiara, where relevant humanitarian actors including UNOCHA are present. An aerial assessment has been conducted by NDMO to provide an overview of damage in the affected areas Malaita and Makira-Ulawa provinces. Results of the aerial assessment will be made available overnight. Meanwhile, initial reports received from the provinces indicate disaster impacts resulting from the earthquake and tsunami, in the summarized table below.