Very Strong earthquake right below Port-Vila, Vanuatu

Last update: July 8, 2014 at 7:53 pm by By

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Update 13:28 UTC : Remark for the International readers : The population of Vanuatu is used to regular strong to even massive earthquakes but they are mostly located out of the coast. As they are living on top of a subduction range, their biggest fear are Tsunamis. Tsunamis are normally not generated below M7 and at deep hypocenters.

Screen Shot 2014-07-08 at 15.28.02 Screen Shot 2014-07-08 at 15.28.11

Update 13:24 UTC : Thanks to the Port Vila people who told us whether it was dangerous or not. After the first reports we have now confirmation that the depth was right (+100 km). If at a shallow depth this earthquake would have been damaging!

Screen Shot 2014-07-08 at 16.31.29

Update 13:15 UTC : The earthquake has been felt until New Caledonia! The main reason for this is the deep hypocenter. Deep earthquakes are radiating shock waves over a very vast area

Screen Shot 2014-07-08 at 21.27.44 Screen Shot 2014-07-08 at 21.28.43

Update 13:11 UTC : Based on Preliminary results the epicenter is located right below Port-Vila, which does not happen often. We are still waiting for the first people from that area to report us whether the shaking was strong or not. Based on the data we have right now, it is hard to be conclusive if their would be damage or not.

Update 13:08 UTC : Due to the depth (+100 km) the impact will be weakened, but we call this earthquake still moderately dangerous.

Screen Shot 2014-07-08 at 15.18.08

13km (8mi) NNE of Port-Vila, Vanuatu
263km (163mi) SSE of Luganville, Vanuatu
382km (237mi) NNE of We, New Caledonia
540km (336mi) NNE of Dumbea, New Caledonia
13km (8mi) NNE of Port-Vila, Vanuatu

Most important Earthquake Data:

Magnitude : 6.2

Local Time (conversion only below land) : 2014-07-08 23:56:28

GMT/UTC Time : 2014-07-08 12:56:28

Depth (Hypocenter) : 115 km

Depth and Magnitude updates in the list below.

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Click on the “I Felt It” button behind the corresponding earthquake. Your earthquake experience is not only important for science, but also for people in the area as well as our global readership.

SRC Location UTC Date/time M D INFO
EMSC Vanuatu Jul 08 12:56 6.2 118 MAP I Felt It
  • Noumea, New Caledonia - I was not afraid
  • Port Vila - No visible damage.
  • Port Vila - Long noisy quake. Enough to wake us up
  • Port Vila - No damage observed
  • Port Vila - no known damage at the melanesian hotel. quite strong, prolonged shaking and creaking sounds, very loud rumbling. bit scary.
  • port vila - Thought it was going to get bigger than this so went outside but it eventually ended. Everything fine, no damage done so far that I know of..
  • Havannah - Woke us up
  • Port-Vila - i felt it. things shock slowly and suddenly very strong shaking (for a short time) and back to the slow shaking and it quieted down. Nothing was damaged.
  • Port Vila - Woke us up with a long, heavy shake - 10 seconds ish. Awaiting tsunami alerts ER : Hypocenter too deep, so normally NO tsunami alerts expected
  • Port Vila - Petites secousses pendant une vingtaine de secondes. Rien d'alarmant
  • Port Vila - Awoke whole household. Solidly over 1min with obvious crescendo. Quite unnerving. Opened doors and shook windows. No damage noted tonight.
  • Vila - strong shaking in few second after it slowly dying out
  • Port villa - No damage But went on for about 10 seconds Scary, awaiting for warnings
  • Efate - strong shaking no damage
  • Port Vila - no damage but was waken up at midnight
  • Port Vila - Woke me up and scared the dog, but no damages
  • Port Vila - Woke us up (staying at The Terraces). Whole apartment shook. Shaking increased & became quite violent for a few (long) seconds, then died down & continued for a few more seconds. Surprisingly, no visible damage done.
  • Port Vila - No damage in our hotel room have not been outside the room yet, woke us both up extreme shaking but nothing was broken
  • Nouméa, New Caledonia - Just hear the mirror-doors trembling at midnight, and feel a weak shaking while lying in our bed
  • Port Vila - No Damage. Short, Sharp shaking, not the long, loose damaging kind. Couldn't sleep so was awake when it hit, scared the dog but wasn't too concerned myself.
  • Portvila - 30 secs..moderate..continual.No damage..nothing moved.
  • Port-Vila - It was like a snake crowling under my house, or like i was in a boat rolling
  • Port Vila - Rumbling and then very strong shaking with feeling of building moving went on for some seconds and then gradually faded.
  • Port Vila - The shaking woke me up in the middle of the night and continued for about a minute. We are staying at the Grand Hotel and the whole building was moving. No significant damage noticed though
  • Port Vila - It woke me up from sleep. The bed was shaking like someone making a push-pull motion.
  • Port-Vila - Pas de dégâts constaté mais un réveil bien soudain.
  • GEOFON Vanuatu Islands Jul 08 12:56 6.2 115 MAP I Felt It INFO
    USGS Port-vila, Vanuatu Jul 08 12:56 6.3 114 MAP I Felt It


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    MMI II (Very weak shaking) ?
    People :
    Felt by persons at rest, on upper floors or favorably placed.
    MMI III (Weak shaking) ?
    People :
    Felt indoors; hanging objects may swing, vibration similar to passing of light trucks, duration may be estimated, may not be recognized as an earthquake.
    MMI IV (Light shaking) ?
    People :
    Generally noticed indoors but not outside. Light sleepers may be awakened. Vibration may be likened to the passing of heavy traffic, or to the jolt of a heavy object falling or striking the building.
    Fittings :
    Doors and windows rattle. Glassware and crockery rattle. Liquids in open vessels may be slightly disturbed. Standing motorcars may rock.
    Structures :
    Walls and frames of buildings, and partitions and suspended ceilings in commercial buildings, may be heard to creak.
    MMI V (Moderate shaking) ?
    People :
    Generally felt outside, and by almost everyone indoors. Most sleepers awakened. A few people alarmed.
    Fittings :
    Small unstable objects are displaced or upset. Some glassware and crockery may be broken. Hanging pictures knock against the wall. Open doors may swing. Cupboard doors secured by magnetic catches may open. Pendulum clocks stop, start, or change rate.
    Structures :
    Some large display windows cracked. A few earthenware toilet fixtures cracked.
    MMI VI (Strong shaking) ?
    People Felt by all. People and animals alarmed. Many run outside. Difficulty experienced in walking steadily.
    Fittings :
    Objects fall from shelves. Pictures fall from walls. Some furniture moved on smooth floors, some unsecured free-standing fireplaces moved. Glassware and crockery broken. Very unstable furniture overturned. Small church and school bells ring. Appliances move on bench or table tops. Filing cabinets or "easy glide" drawers may open (or shut).
    Structures :
    Slight damage to buildings with low standard. Some stucco or cement plaster falls. Large display windows broken. Damage to a few weak domestic chimneys, some may fall.
    Environment :
    Trees and bushes shake, or are heard to rustle. Loose material may be dislodged from sloping ground, e.g. existing slides, talus slopes, shingle slides.
    MMI VII (Very strong shaking) ?
    People
    General alarm. Difficulty experienced in standing. Noticed by motorcar drivers who may stop.
    Fittings :
    Large bells ring. Furniture moves on smooth floors, may move on carpeted floors. Substantial damage to fragile contents of buildings.
    Structures :
    Unreinforced stone and brick walls cracked. Low standard buildings cracked with some minor masonry falls. A few instances of damage to buildings of ordinary workmanship. Unbraced parapets, unbraced brick gables, and architectural ornaments fall. Roofing tiles, especially ridge tiles may be dislodged. Many unreinforced domestic chimneys damaged, often falling from roof-line. Water tanks Type I burst. A few instances of damage to brick veneers and plaster or cement-based linings. Unrestrained water cylinders (hot-water cylinders) may move and leak. Some common windows cracked. Suspended ceilings damaged.
    Environment :
    Water made turbid by stirred up mud. Small slides such as falls of sand and gravel banks, and small rock-falls from steep slopes and cuttings. Instances of settlement of unconsolidated or wet, or weak soils. Some fine cracks appear in sloping ground. A few instances of liquefaction (i.e. small water and sand ejections).
    MMI VIII (Severe shaking) ?
    People Alarm may approach panic. Steering of motorcars greatly affected. Structures : Low standard buildings heavily damaged, some collapse. ordinary workmanship buildings damaged, some with partial collapse. Reinforced masonry or concrete buildings damaged in some cases. A few instances of damage to buildings and bridges designed and built to resist earthquakes. Monuments and pre-1976 elevated tanks and factory stacks twisted or brought down. Some pre-1965 infill masonry panels damaged. A few post-1980 brick veneers damaged. Decayed timber piles of houses damaged. Houses not secured to foundations may move. Most unreinforced domestic chimneys damaged, some below roof-line, many brought down. Environment : Cracks appear on steep slopes and in wet ground. Small to moderate slides in roadside cuttings and unsupported excavations. Small water and sand ejections and localized lateral spreading adjacent to streams, canals, lakes, etc.
    MMI IX (Violent shaking) ?
    Structures Many low standard buildings destroyed. Ordinary workmanship buildings heavily damaged, some collapse. Reinforced masonry or concrete buildings damaged, some with partial collapse. Buildings and bridges designed and built to resist earthquakes damaged in some cases, some with flexible frames seriously damaged. Damage or permanent distortion to some buildings and bridges, designed and built to normal use standards. Houses not secured to foundations shifted off. Brick veneers fall and expose frames. Environment : Cracking of ground conspicuous. Landsliding general on steep slopes. Liquefaction effects intensified and more widespread, with large lateral spreading and flow sliding adjacent to streams, canals, lakes, etc.
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