Tsunami alert after 7.9-magnitude PNG quake: USGS/PTWC

Sydney (AFP) –


A great 7.9-magnitude earthquake struck off Papua New Guinea on Saturday, the US Geological Survey said, prompting the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre to issue an alert in several coastal areas.

Hazardous tsunami waves could hit coastal areas of Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Indonesia, Nauru and other islands in the three hours following the quake, the PTWC said.

The quake struck 60 km to the east of Taron, New Ireland, at 8.51 pm local time (1051 GMT) and was originally recorded at 8.0-magititude and then slightly revised down to 7.9. It struck at a depth of some 75 km, the USGS said.