x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Strong earthquake hits off El Salvador coast

A strong magnitude-7.4 earthquake struck off the coast of El Salvador followed an hour later by a magnitude-5.4 aftershock, authorities said early today.

SAN SALVADOR // A strong magnitude-7.4 earthquake struck off the coast of El Salvador followed an hour later by a magnitude-5.4 aftershock, authorities said early today. There were no immediate reports of damages or injuries.

A tsunami warning was put into effect for Costa Rica, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Panama and Mexico after the quake struck. The warning was later rescinded.

David Walsh, an oceanographer with the Pacific Tsunami Center in Ewa Beach, Hawaii, said a minor, 10-centimetre (3.94-inche) tsunami was registered off Acajutla, El Salvador.

The quake was located 138 kilometres south-southwest of San Miguel, the US Geological Survey reported on its web site. The temblor took place at a depth of 53km. The second quake registered about an hour later in the same area at a depth of 357.8km.

Alfonso Lara, a technician with El Salvador's Civil Protection agency said authorities were alerted to the threat of a tsunami. "We are doing a general monitoring of the entire coast through our technicians and representatives," he said.

On Sunday, dozens of small to moderate earthquakes struck southeastern California, knocking trailer homes off their foundations and shattering windows in a small farming town east of San Diego. The largest quake registered at a magnitude 5.5 and was centered about 5km northwest of the town of Brawley, according to the USGS. Another quake about an hour and a half earlier registered at magnitude 5.3. No injuries were reported.