Powerful quake rattles homes, gold mine in Papua New Guinea

Powerful quake rattles homes, gold mine in Papua New Guinea

Geophysicist Paul Caruso said there was no tsunami danger.Papua New Guinea is located on the eastern half of the island of New Guinea, to the east of Indonesia.

At least one company began evacuating non-essential personnel after a powerful 7.5 magnitude quake hit Papua New Guinea's energy-rich interior on Monday, causing landslides, damaging buildings and closing oil and gas operations.

It wasn't immediately clear if there was damage.

The quake follows another seismic event in Japan, where a 5.5 magintude natural disaster struck just hours before.

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The quake occurred at around 3:44 AM Monday local time at an estimated depth of 35 kilometers near the Southern Highlands area of New Guinea island. A series of strong aftershocks had rattled other parts of the fault line, McKee said.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Hawaii says there is no risk of tsunami caused by the jolt.

ExxonMobil Corp said it had shut its Hides gas conditioning plant, close to the quake's epicentre, to assess any damage.

Papua New Guinea sits on the Pacific Ring of Fire, an area known for seismic upheavals and volcanic eruptions.

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