ST LOUIS (LALATE) – A Papua New Guinea earthquake 2014 today has struck Kokoda. The Papua New Guinea earthquake today March 31, 2014 began within the hour, and on land. Damage assessment is pending.
Officials tell news that a 5.7 magnitude Papua New Guinea earthquake today just after 11:40 PM local time. The quake was shallow. Reps tell news that the quake started only six miles below ground level. As a result the quake could be felt across the island.
USGS indicates to news that the Papua New Guinea earthquake today started sixty-three miles west of Kokoda. It was seventy miles southeast of Wau and seventy-eight from Port Moresby. the quake started eighty miles from Bulolo as well.
The region has suffered several significant quakes in recent years. In May 2012, a 6.7 magnitude quake hit the region. It was centered outside in New Guinea, roughly forty-one miles east of Goroka. The quake could be felt seventy miles south in Madang. USGS indicated to news at the time that the quake was roughly two hundred miles north of Port Moresby and one thousand five hundred miles from Brisbane.
USGS tells news today that “There have been 22 M7.5+ earthquakes recorded in the New Guinea region since 1900. The dominant earthquake mechanisms are thrust and strike slip, associated with the arc-continent collision and the relative motions between numerous local microplates. The largest earthquake in the region was a M8.2 shallow thrust fault event in the northern Papua province of Indonesia that killed 166 people in 1996.” They add “The western portion of the northern Australia plate boundary extends approximately 4800 km from New Guinea to Sumatra and primarily separates Australia from the Eurasia plate, including the Sunda block. This portion is dominantly convergent and includes subduction at the Sunda (Java) trench, and a young arc-continent collision.”