April 6th, 2010
09:28 PM ET

7.7-magnitude quake strikes Indonesia

[Updated at 9:50 p.m.] Read the full CNN.com story

[Updated at 9:18 p.m.] The tsunami watches have been canceled for "all areas of the Indian Ocean," according to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center.

[Updated at 9:12 p.m.] Residents in Banda Aceh said they were without power.

Residents in coastal towns fled inland to higher ground just after the quake, according to a local radio station.

The tsunamis, in Banyak Island and Teluk Dalam, were small and not dangerous, measuring just under a foot high, said Fauzi, chief of the Indonesian Meteorological and Geophysics Agency. Fauzi goes by only one name, which is common in Indonesia.

[Updated at 8:20 p.m.] The quake triggered two tsunamis, according to the Indonesian Meteorological and Geophysics Agency.

There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries. The initial shaking, which reportedly lasted for at least three minutes, prompted scores of people to run out of buildings into open air, witnesses said.

"The quake was felt quite strong, maybe about three four minutes," said Dadik, the head of Simeulue police who goes by only one name. "I've ordered my staff to check if there's any damage or casualties, but apparently no damage reported so far."

Measurements of sea levels indicated that tsunami waves "may have been  destructive along coasts near the earthquake epicenter," the Pacific Tsunami  Warning Center said.

One registered tsunami measured close to a foot from peak to trough and  was considered a small tsunami, said geophysicist Gerard Fryer with the Pacific  Tsunami Warning Center.

Indonesia announced the tsunami warning quickly, Fryer said, and  officials at Indonesia's Meteorological and Geophysics Agency lifted it about  two hours later.

[Updated at 7:50 p.m.] The depth at which the earthquake struck has also been changed. The USGS has revised the depth to 19.3 miles. It was previously reported to be 28.6 miles.

[Updated at 7:42 p.m.] A 9.1-magnitude underwater earthquake struck off the coast of Sumatra in 2004, triggering a tsunami that killed more than 200,000 people in 14 countries.

The tsunami, which washed away entire communities, caused nearly $10 billion in damage and more casualties than any other tsunami in history, according to the United Nations. Indonesia was among the hardest hit nations.

Did you feel the quake? Share you story through iReport.

[Updated at 7:38 p.m.] The USGS has downgraded the earthquake to magnitude 7.7. The temblor struck 125 miles from Sibolga, situated on Indonesia's Sumatra island.

[Updated at 7:29 p.m.] CNN meteorologist Chad Meyers talks to CNN's Wolf Blitzer about the number of earthquakes that have occurred recently.

[Updated at 7:16 p.m.] CNN's Lisa Sylvester has some of the early details about the quake.

[Updated at 7:07 p.m.] Scientists are monitoring data from ocean buoys to determine whether the earthquake already generated a tsunami, said geophysicist Gerard Fryer of the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center.

If a tsunami does erupt from the quake in shallow waters, Fryer said, it would be very small and not move much water.

Scientists said they do not expect the tsunami to affect the west coast of North America.

[Updated at 6:47 p.m.] The temblor struck 145 miles off the coast of northern Sumatra, Indonesia, at a depth of 28.6 miles, the U.S. Geological Survey reported.

A "destructive widespread tsunami" is not expected, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said, but a local tsunami could affect coastal areas near the quake's epicenter.

[Updated at 6:41 p.m.] A local tsunami watch has been issued for Indonesia and surrounding areas.

[Posted at 6:35 p.m.] A 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck northern Sumatra, Indonesia, early Wednesday according to the U. S. Geological Survey.

- CNN's Augie Martin and Andy Saputra contributed to this report.

soundoff (223 Responses)
  1. How Long

    How long will it be before the conspiracy idiots start blaming the US for causing the earthquake with HAARP?

    April 6, 2010 at 7:34 pm | Report abuse |
  2. pavster

    how is indonesia now? i hope everything will be alright

    April 6, 2010 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
  3. M

    To Mary, what is the "ring of fire" you are referring to?? I had not heard of that.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Sharon

    I was fast asleep in KL hotel room and started rocking so, yes, it was definitely felt in Malaysia.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Kellen

    While it may seem like these earthquakes are happening frequently, in the true (geological) larger picture, the Earth is just going through a natural phase of adjustment. It has happened literally thousands of times in the tens-of-millions of years the Earth has existed.
    It's when the Earth STOPS moving that we should be worried 🙂

    In the meantime all we can do is help survivors recover and rebuild. Such is Life.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
  6. DJMAC

    Global warming! It's making the earth puff up like Jiffy Pop! We've got to make more ice in the fridge and dump it in the ocean.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Iyov

    Is it possible the poles are changing?

    April 6, 2010 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
  8. sonia

    we felt the tremor right up at the northern state of Malaysia....

    April 6, 2010 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
  9. daktari

    magnitude 7.8!!!!!?????? it's the biggest quake yet in a series since Haiti...
    the number, frequency and magnitude of all of them is spooky

    April 6, 2010 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Joe Matus

    Wow...i think the Earth is turning itself and is changing.Embrace for IMPACT guys!!!

    April 6, 2010 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Michael

    well, the inner core will take the blame because it moved all those plates! hey don't get jealous if you think i'm smart!(i am a kid!)

    April 6, 2010 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Barry

    Nothing unusual is happening folks in the big scheme of things. The earth has been doing this for billions of years and will continue to do so for the next few billion years. It is called plate tectonics. This process will continue until the sun starts to expand (as it runs out of its hydrogen nuclear fuel), envelops the earth, boils off the seas and then melts the tectonic plates. No need to worry about that though because human beings will be well extinct by then anyway.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
  13. chubz

    There were actualy 21 7.0 earthquakes in the year 1970, thats almost one every 2 weeks. We only have 5 and were are 1/3 into the year. Way below that mark.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Brad

    All these quakes – getting ready for the big one in 2012!

    April 6, 2010 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  15. valerie

    it's called mother nature

    April 6, 2010 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15