The Pacific ‘Ring of Fire’ was struck by a MASSIVE 8.2 earthquake on August 19, 2018 (UTC time), southeast of Fiji and close to Tonga. The deep quake – 347.7 miles (560km) below the earth’s surface – was initially measured at M8.0 and was later upgraded to 8.2. Tens of significant aftershocks followed up, with one measuring M6.8. Just minutes before the strong aftershock, another strong earthquake hit near the Rinjani volcano on the Island of Lombok in Indonesia. This new M6.3 earthquake is the third tremor within 2 weeks to hit the island.
The Pacific ring of fire was very active in the last 24 hours. After M6.1 (Costa Rica) and M6.5 (Indonesia) earthquakes, now seismometers around the world have measured a massive M8.2 earthquake followed by a M6.8 aftershock and a third M6.3 earthquake on the already devastated Lombok Island in Indonesia.
The M8.2 quake happened around 347.7 miles (560km) below the earth’s surface — and experts say if it had happened close to the surface it would have caused catastrophic damage. Its epicentre is 167 miles (270km) east of Levuka in Fiji and 275 miles (443km) west of Neiafu in Tonga.
The earthquake triggered a number of significant aftershocks, several measuring over 5.0, with one of them measured at M6.8, four hours after the main quake. The US Geological Survey (USGS) said the quake was so deep it wasn’t expected to cause any serious damage. The US Tsunami Warning Centre also said the quake was thought to be too deep to trigger a tsunami.
There have been a number of devastating earthquakes in the Pacific “Ring of Fire”, most recently in Indonesia, where a quake on the island of Lombok killed 460 about two weeks ago. On August 19, 2018, the same region was struck by another powerful M6.3earthquake. This is the third within 2 weeks in the region.