UPDATE 19/02 “ 16:29 UTC : Mike Hannah reported this morning via facebook the following on Soroako : Power restored to expat residential area 45 hours after quake.The hydro dams power the mine and smelter. The third hydro dam [the lowest] is only a few km from Malili and is presently under construction. FB contacts reporting aftershocks 2 days after. No word on mine infrastructure (Western designed kit which would have had proper design, so should be fine).
UPDATE 18/02 “ 23:55 UTC : Malili seems to have been hit the hardest with a number of collapsed houses and damage to fences, awnings, cracks in houses etc. NO injuries have been recorded.
Early February 18, the power was not yet restored in Soroako.
UPDATE 17/02 “ 14:25 UTC : Mike Hannah wrote to us via Facebook that he had a call with someone working in Soroako. He confirmed that there were NO reports of casualties or injuries.Â The power in the residential housing areas near the mine is not restored yet.
UPDATE 16/02 – 18:39 UTC : The updates and follow-up of the aftermath of this earthquake looks to be a “earthquake-report world exclusive” (if we exclude the Indonesian press of course ).
After reports in the International press right after the quake, the non-Indonesian press went silent.
UPDATE 16/02 – 17:11 UTC : USGS reports a moderate aftershock of 4.7 at a depth of 33 km. The epicenter location of the aftershock is more to the North-East of the lake, approx. in the middle between Lake Matano and the Banda Sea.
There are much more aftershocks than this one, but most of them were weaker.
UPDATE 16/02 – 16:58 UTC : The Indonesian news channel Tempo reported that hundreds of people ran to the higher grounds of the Sorowako airport when the earthquake struck yesterday evening (local time) fearing for a lake tsunami. The local people told reporters that the shaking lasted for approx. 1 minute. Most people were enjoying dinner when the shaking started.
So far no casualties were reported. However, a dock on Lake Towuti vanished (probably by the shaking).
The first damage inspection survey in the greater epicenter area revealed that hundreds of houses are left with cracks in the wall, many school buildings area also damaged.
Some houses are reported collapsed in the Malili district, approx. 30 km from Sorowako.
Sorowako residents are still scared. Officials did inform local people not to believe in the rumors of a potential lake tsunami.
UPDATE 16/02 – 12:07 UTC : Arisa Asrul writes from the epicenter area @ Sorowako :
Since 12pm (Indonesian timezone), there a few small shake in Sorowako, when i write this a minute ago i felt a a small shake, do you have any information about, several people still live in open area because they got rumor about middle of the night will occur a big earthquake.
Earthquake-report answer : Rumors on a big coming earthquake are ridiculous. Please tell them.
Earthquakes are UNPREDICTABLE.
Of course, after an earthquake like yesterday, a lot of aftershocks can scare people a lot. Most of the time aftershocks are always smaller than the mainshock, however even that cannot be predicted. In some cases they can indeed be stronger, but nobody can predict that. BMKG, USGS, EMSC etc, the biggest organizations in the world cannot predict the magnitude of an upcoming earthquake.
The current aftershocks may go on for days, weeks and even months, but normally the frequency will go down and the magnitude in average also. Some major aftershocks are still possible. The February 27 2010 massive earthquake in Chile still generates aftershocks today.
UPDATE 16/02 – 09:40 UTC : Padli was also in Soroako and he wrote Earthquake-Report :
I am @ Soroako now. We had felt some series of shakes last night started from around 21.30 local time. Until now (16 Feb, 12:07 PM) , several shakes still happening. Rumor says some building were damaged and nickel mining activities were interrupted. Last night earthquakes made thousand of people flew out of home and stayed outside until around 3 AM. (this update came in as a comment below this article)
UPDATE 16/02 – 09:30 UTC : Reports of cracked houses, evacuations and business interruptions are labeling this earthquake as a CatDat Orange until a full damage report is established.
UPDATE 16/02 – 00:40 UTC : Finally a Felt and experience report from the nearest location to the epicenter, Soroako or Sorowako.
Paul Nikkel was in Sorowako during the quake “ no damages aside from power outage and no injuries as far as I am aware.
UPDATE 23:55 UTC : 9 hours after the earthquake we have still NOT seen any news from Soroako, the city at approx. 20 km from the epicenter.
Sulawesi newspapers are only mentioning scared people and power outages after the quake in Poso.
Poso is about 150 km from the epicenter and thus cannot be compared with Soroako.
PT Inco the mining company has not yetÂ released a report on the earthquake. We expect that a report will be published soon.
Newspapers start to work again around this time in Indonesia (they mostly do not work during the night) and soon the final outcome will be known.
UPDATE 18:16 UTC : The earthquake was probably the result of a movement in the Matano fault (named after the lake).Â There is still doubt whether today’s earthquake is sideways or an up and down shift, most likely sideways.
UPDATE 17:10 UTC : If you are a user of Google News and a regular reader of Earthquake-Report, you may consider in telling Google news that it may be worthwhile to follow us. We have seen on various occasions (also today) that their sources are not always up to date.Â Thanks for supporting us.
UPDATE 16:44 UTC : Reports coming out of Poso did reveal NO damage to buildings. Poso is however NOT relevant for the final outcome of this earthquake as it is located at nearly 150 km from the epicenter.
UPDATE 16:31 UTC : Still NO direct news from the greater epicenter area. Earthquake-Report is following the aftermath of this earthquake by the means of many sources in Indonesia.
UPDATE 16:13 UTC : Positioning and measuring earthquake locations and earthquake energy is far from easy. Every agency has its own system and takes a lot of data into account to report a certain magnitude. The magnitude will always be an average of many stations.
Calculation of the epicenter location is also very difficult and has a substantial error margin of several kilometers. Felt reports of people living in the area are often giving another picture as measured by instruments.
The reasons for that will be explained in a special article we prepare for this subject.
In this particular case, the epicenter can be as it was reported by USGS. There is however also a possibility that the epicenter is more away from population into the wilderness or, on the bad site, closer to the settlements.
Let’s hope for a more remote location in the wilderness.
UPDATE 15:59 UTC : Live Seismograph recorder of the February 15, 2011 earthquake in Sulawesi, Indonesia near Soroako.Â Seismograph installed in Davao, Philippines.
UPDATE 15:52 UTC : BMKG (Seismology Indonesia) reported a 4.7 aftershock at 20:45 WIB. The epicenter of this aftershock was 18 km from Soroako and hadÂ a depth of 30 km.
UPDATE 15:49 UTC : Indonesian people are hoping to get a fast sign of safety from 2 major places in the area : Soroako and Bungku (Central Sulawesi)
UPDATE 15:47 UTC : A ferry takes people in between Soroako and Nuha across Lake Matano. It is not known whether the ferry was transporting people on the lake. As it was 6:30 PM in the evening, probably not.
UPDATE 15:43 UTC : A lot of settlements are located at the northern border of the lake without any road passing by.
It looks like the only roads in the lake’s area are those to reach the mining site of Soroako. The northern side of the lake has the steepest slopes.
UPDATE 15:41 UTC : Almost all the settlements in the area are borderingÂ Lake Matano.
UPDATE 15:36 UTC : Soroako has his own airfield with a runway of approx. 3500 ft following world-airport-codes.com.
An airport close to the epicenter is very important enabling rescue services to fly in equipment if needed.
UPDATE 15:33 UTC : We believe that PT Inco management in Soroaka will be the first to send out signals about eventual damage and/or injuries as they will have certainly satellite communications working on batteries.
UPDATE 15:30 UTC : PT Inco is an Indonesian mining company who has a number of mining pits and ore plants in Sulawesi (Celebes).
The company has also a dormitory hotel for its workers.
The indigenous population of Soroako are mostly farmers.
UPDATE 15:24 UTC : People fled out of their houses more than 100 km from the epicenter and are reluctant to return to them as they are scared for aftershocks.
UPDATE 15:17 UTC : Soroako or Sorowako is the location of one of the greatest open pit nickel mines in Indonesia. So far NO news yet out of Soroako.
Pt Inco’s nickel mining operation in Sorowako is classified as open pit/cast mining
UPDATE 15:10 UTC : People in Palu, the capital of Central Sulawesi have reported that the shocks lasted for at least 20 seconds.
UPDATEÂ 15:09 UTC : Power has been lost in Poso and Morawali, more than 100 km from the epicenter
UPDATE 14:53 UTC : Felt intensities from BMKG – Indonesian Geophysical Institute, Poso IV-V, II-III Luwuk, V Soroako, II-III Masamba, II-III Palopo, I-II Kendari,
UPDATE 14:50 UTC : Over 9000 people live in Soroako… mostly workers. NB: The Bahasa name is Sorowako.
UPDATE 14:45 UTC : Other towns in the near epicenter are Malili, Bungku, Dongin and Bahumbulu as well as Soroako. Still waiting for more substantial news from our indonesian sources. The epicenter is nearly exactly on the point of the border between
Central Sulawesi, SouthEast Sulawesi and South Sulawesi…
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UPDATE 14:44 UTC : There is nickel mining close to Soroako (PT Inco), which could be affected.
UPDATE 14:38 UTC : The epicenter area was also struck by other earthquakes like : 29.12.1828 – 30.07.1907 and 15.08.2002
UPDATE 14:36 UTC : Last year the 15th June 2010 at 23:53,Â there was an earthquake on the other side of the island at North Mamuju, killing one person working at a sand quarry. The Magnitude was 5.1 Mw.
UPDATE 14:33 UTC : theoretical models can only be reasonably good when the data entered in them is also nearly correct. Earthquake data like magnitude, depth and epicenter location hace to be recalculated ny seismologists and can be rectified to + or + afterwards.
UPDATE 14:30 UTC : When we entered the earthquake data in another theoretical model, the result came out as max.Â 50 people might be injured. Fatalities 0 to 3.
UPDATE 14:25 UTC : Wikipedia description of Lake Matano in the immediate vicinity of the earthquake’s epicenter : Lake Matano, also known as Matana, is a natural lake in South Sulawesi, Indonesia. It is the deepest lake in Indonesia (ranked by maximum depth), and the 10th deepest lake in the world.
UPDATE 14:19 UTC : Our theoretical models are predicting NO loss of live
UPDATE 14:17 UTC : GDACS automated systems have published a GREEN earthquake alert for this earthquake = very
limited chance on damage and/or injuries. Earthquake-Report does however NOT agree with GDACS as we find too many uncertainties in this earthquake.
UPDATE 14:15 UTC : As it is after dark in Sulawesi, it may take a long time before we will know the exact outcome of this very dangerous earthquake.
UPDATE 14:11 UTC : Based on the epicenter calculations of the USGS and the energy of this earthquake a severe shaking can be experienced by 1,000 people, very strong shaking by 4,000 people and a strong shaking by 314,000 people.
UPDATE 14:07 UTC : Although we have no names of the villages, on satellite pictures we can clearly see a number of settlements on the shores of Lake Matano and no more than 10 km from the epicenter (if the epicenter location is confirmed after recalculation).
At 9:33 PM local time, a very strong earthquake occurred below Sulawesi Indonesia.
Earthquake-Report.com calls this earthquake very dangerous because of the shallow depth of the hypocenter (20 km).
There is NO risk for a tsunami as the epicenter is located on the island.
Most important Earthquake Data:
Magnitude : 6.1
UTC time :Â Tuesday, February 15, 2011 at 13:33:53 UTC
Local time at epicenter : Tuesday, February 15, 2011 at 09:33:53 PM at epicenter
Depth (Hypocenter) : 20 km
Quake-maps.com satellite map + I Did Feel It form
Although we have no names of the villages, on satellite pictures we can clearly see a number of settlements on the shores of Lake Matano and no more than 10 km from the epicenter (if the epicenter location is confirmed after recalculation).
255 km (158 miles) SE (133Â°) from Palu, Sulawesi, Indonesia
Links to important maps
USGS Did You Feel It Map
Google satellite map of the area showing the kind of terrain the earthquake took place
3-dimensional view of the earthquake area (USGS epicenter location)
USGS Shaking map
USGS historic earthquakes map
USGS impact on population map
USGS Seismic hazard map
LIVE SEISMOGRAM (Seismograph station of Davao, Philippines)
GDACS Green Earthquake Alert (Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System)
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