Japan issues tsunami alert as 7.3 magnitude earthquake hits Philippines

Tsunami waves of 1 metre are expected to hit Japan's southwestern coast roughly 30 minutes later, reports NHK

Web Desk
Saturday, December 02, 2023
A tsunami reaches Miyako City, overtopping seawalls and flooding streets in Iwate Prefecture, Japan, after the magnitude 9.0 earthquake struck the area March 11, 2011. — Reuters

An earthquake of at least 7.3 magnitude struck Mindanao in the southern Philippines late Saturday, prompting evacuation orders and tsunami warnings (of waves) one metre (3 feet) or higher for Japan.

The waves might hit the Philippines by midnight (1600 GMT) and linger for several hours, according to the Philippine Seismology Agency Phivolcs.

According to the US Tsunami Warning System, waves up to 3 metres above tide level may occur along many Philippine coastlines.

“Boats already at sea during this period should stay offshore in deep waters until further advised,” Phivolcs reported, asking people living near the coast of Surigao Del Sur and Davao Oriental provinces to “immediately evacuate” or “move farther inland”.

According to Japanese broadcaster NHK, tsunami waves of up to a metre were expected to impact Japan's southern coast about 1:30am on Sunday (1630 GMT on Saturday).

Phivolcs projected that the tremor would cause significant damage, but warned of aftershocks.

According to Raymark Gentallan, the local police commander of Hinatuan, a beach town near the earthquake's epicentre, power has been cut off since the tremor, but no casualties or damage have been confirmed.

The Philippines, which is located on the Pacific Ocean's "Ring of Fire," a band of volcanoes causing seismic activity, is prone to earthquakes.

Moreover, a magnitude 7.5 earthquake was observed at a depth of 63 kilometres (39 miles) by the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre (EMSC).

According to the US Geographic Survey, the quake had a magnitude of 7.6 and a depth of 32 kilometres (20 miles), and it occurred around 10:37pm., Philippines time (1437 GMT).