- Associated Press - Tuesday, August 10, 2010

SYDNEY — A small tsunami was generated off Vanuatu on Tuesday after a powerful earthquake rattled the South Pacific island nation, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said.

The 9-inch (22 centimeter) wave was observed off the capital Port Vila, where buildings shook and power lines were downed by the 7.5 magnitude quake.

“It was quite a significant earthquake, and we’re still having a few aftershocks,” Ben McKenzie of the New Zealand High Commission told The Associated Press by phone from Port Vila.

The quake hit about 25 miles (40 kilometers) northwest of Port Vila at a depth of 22 miles (35 kilometers), the U.S. Geological Survey said.

The four-story office building housing the New Zealand High Commission suffered some damage, said McKenzie, first secretary at the New Zealand diplomatic post. Office shelves and ceiling tiles fell down and computers were “thrown across the office” by the jolt, he said.

“We’re trying to ensure everybody is safe and we’re evacuating the building” to check that it’s not “structurally damaged,” he said.

Telephone lines in Port Vila were cut by the quake, and there were several power outages, McKenzie said.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times is switching its third-party commenting system from Disqus to Spot.IM. You will need to either create an account with Spot.im or if you wish to use your Disqus account look under the Conversation for the link "Have a Disqus Account?". Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide