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. Jerry

    Looks like their working their way to the big one... San Andres Fault off California, Oregon and Washington.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Bimbuan

    I am Policeman station in Medan, North Sumatera, just took a tour around the city, didn't see significant damage at all.
    I also got a report of several black out, still no news about Seumelue Island in Aceh (closest to epic center).

    April 6, 2010 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Andy Cortez

    Earths plates have to move somewhere and at sometime. Chances are at some point one of our plates shifted more than usual due to a build up in friction. As a result all other plates might have gave way and shifted also... sort of how the connect wheels work in a clock. There's no telling when or where another earthquake will happen. The process of convection which drives plate tectonics is way too massive, Just strap yourselves in and enjoy life 😉

    April 6, 2010 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Andy Cortez

    not friction i mean tension 😉

    April 6, 2010 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Eric

    For the last month or so there have been earthquakes left and right. What's causing this? Matthew 24 tells us that earthquakes will be happening a lot more right before the end. God is giving His warning. Let's hear it.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
  6. God Rules

    All of these earthquakes are part of a bigger thing then "Mother Nature"...Jesus is coming!!1. The Word of God states in Matthew chapter 24 that "their will be earthquakes in various places in the last days". Jesus Is Coming Fast!!!! Look at the signs!!! Jesus loves You guys. Repent and be saved!!! Praise be to Him who lives forever. Amen.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:52 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Samain

    Was looking at the USGS earthquake map this morning and it looked crazy. Can't hardly see Southern CA for all the earthquakes they have marked over the last week. Alaska has had quite a few quakes too. And now this. Been quite a bit of activity lately.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Mary

    After all these earthquakes..
    If I lived on a fault line or any where near one I would definitely have a escape plan and all my most precious things ready to grab and run with. I would have an earthquake kit ready..With food water and all the things needed put together..Just in case..
    The way things are going I suspect, this ain't over yet~!

    April 6, 2010 at 7:57 pm | Report abuse |
  9. T. Rogers

    Seems like our home (Earth) is being pulled by some extra gravitational force, and judging by the locations of all these Earthquakes lately, I'm going to assume that this massive gravity giant or what ever you want to call it is approaching from the southern hemisphere. Don't get me wrong earthquakes do happen, but these earthquakes are much different than your average earthquake, they tend to last longer, and they feel like the Earth is being pulled up instead of common shaking horizontally. Most logical explanation I have is that a massive object has made its way into our outer solar system and slowly drifting towards the inner portion of the solar system, maybe its a Brown dwarf star or a giant gas planet. What ever it is, it's gravity is messing us up, and its probably going to get much worse as it gets closer.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
  10. G

    Have scientists shared their thoughts about all these earthquakes as a pattern? Is there something going on with the earth that they are not sharing with us so the general public doesn't panic?

    April 6, 2010 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Shelly Strong Eagle Woman

    Yes, Nature is at war with us. Because we no longer respect or take care of Mother earth the way she was intended to be taken care of.

    April 6, 2010 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Asmara

    praying hard for those affected by the earthquake. the 2004 tsunami was devastating, they don't need to go through it again.

    April 6, 2010 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Darryl

    If you ask me i think mother nature had enough of us polluting and eveerything else we do to her it is revenge.

    April 6, 2010 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse |
  14. james

    The truth is we can be wiped out by mother nature at anytime....anybody disagree?

    April 6, 2010 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Ian Mc Vindicated

    Geologically speaking, this is nothing new to mother earth, the plates have been shifting since the crust first formed over the molton planet formed after the big bang.
    Whats new ( relatively speaking ) is that man is keeping track of the natural changes like no time before.
    We monitor minute changes in earths plates, in CO2 concentrations , in sunspots, and sunbursts etc etc..
    Not only that, the Globe is connected via instant communications so that we know in a matter of seconds when an earthquake strikes anywhere in the world giving us the impression something strange is happening, much like the so-called climatologists whom are trying to convince us that man can effect global climate because they have studied about 200 years of the global climate.
    Don;'t be fooled by the 2012 predictions, mankind will still be here on 2013 and for many years to come.
    However, I do predict our ultimate destiny will not come from man-made global warming, but more likely from an asteroid or meteorite hitting us completely off guard and wiping out most of the planet overnight, and the rest to die in a few weeks after that .
    Earthquakes will come and go, mountains will be formed and islands will rise from the depths and others will disappear. Nature is in charge, we are only sloppy guests .

    April 6, 2010 at 8:10 pm | Report abuse |
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