7.2 magnitude earthquake hits off Philippines


Manila:  A strong earthquake measuring 7.2 struck off the Coast of Mindanao Island in the Philippines on Saturday.

There were no immediate reports of destruction or casualties, but according to witnesses the quake was very strong and shook the ground and walls.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre said there was a risk big wave could spread 300 km (190 miles) away from the epicentre, reaching as far away as Indonesia.

The Philippines Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Philvolcs) said no tsunami warning was issued after a quake it had measured at 7.2. The US Geological Survey downgraded its own assessment of the magnitude to 6.8.

Meanwhile, the last lethal earthquake to hit the country was a 7.1-magnitude tremor that left more than 220 people dead and destroyed historic churches when it struck the central islands in October 2013.

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