Magnitude 5.8 quake rattles Indonesia's West Papua

There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage following the earthquake in West Papua, Indonesia, Dec 28, 2018.
There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage following the earthquake in West Papua, Indonesia, Dec 28, 2018.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM USGS

JAKARTA (REUTERS) - A magnitude 5.8 earthquake rattled the eastern Indonesian province of West Papua on Friday (Dec 28), the United States Geological Survey said, causing nervous residents to panic, about a week after a tsunami killed hundreds farther west in the archipelago.

Indonesian authorities measured the quake at a magnitude of 6.1 and said it was "felt quite strongly for several seconds".

There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage. The region in Papua, which makes up half the island known as New Guinea, is sparsely populated.

The epicentre of the quake was on land near the city of Manokwari at a depth of 55km. The Indonesian meteorological agency said it did not have the potential to trigger a tsunami.

Last Saturday, a tsunami caused by the collapse of part of a volcano crater killed at least 430 people when waves of up to 5m smashed into the Sunda Strait between the islands of Java and Sumatra.