The Australian city of Melbourne, capital of the south-eastern state of Victoria, has been struck by a 6.0 magnitude earthquake, damaging buildings but with no serious injuries reported. The quake struck on Wednesday morning, with tremors felt as far away as Adelaide and Sydney. It measured higher on the Richter scale than a 5.6 quake that struck Newcastle, New South Wales, in 1989, killing 13 people.
According to a Reuters report, several buildings have been damaged in this morning’s quake, with the epicentre near the town of Mansfield, 200 kilometres northeast of Melbourne. The quake struck at a depth of 10 kilometres and aftershocks of 4.0 have been reported. Tremors were also felt 800 kilometres to the west, in Adelaide, and 900 kilometres to the north, in Sydney.
Photos and video on social media show one Melbourne street blocked by rubble and there have been reports of power cuts and people being evacuated from buildings. Over half of Australia’s population of 25 million live in the south-east of the country, across the major cities of Melbourne, Adelaide, and Sydney.
Speaking to the media from the US, Australian PM Scott Morrison has welcomed the news that there have been no serious injuries or deaths.
“We have had no reports of serious injuries, or worse, and that is very good news and we hope that good news will continue. It can be a very disturbing event, an earthquake of this nature. They are very rare events in Australia and as a result, I am sure people would have been quite distressed and disturbed.”
The Australian Bureau of Meteorology has confirmed no tsunami threat was issued following the quake.
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