‘3-meter high’ tsunami warning as 7-magnitude quake hits off the coast of Indonesia (VIDEOS)

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'3-meter high' tsunami warning as 7-magnitude quake hits off the coast of Indonesia (VIDEOS)

A powerful magnitude 7 earthquake struck off Indonesia’s island of Sumatra on Friday, prompting authorities to issue a tsunami warning and to order people to evacuate their homes.

The quake hit about 227 km (141 miles) from the city of Teluk Betung on the island at a depth of 59 km (37 miles). Indonesian authorities have warned that the tsunami could reach as high as three meters (10 feet).

“There are some areas at risk of a serious threat of a tsunami that could be as high as three metres,” said agency official Rahmat Triyono, as cited by the AFP. “We’re still waiting for reports about damage from the quake.”

The Indonesian geophysics agency quickly issued a tsunami warning and the country’s Disaster Mitigation Agency said that residents on the Banten coast of Java island should “immediately evacuate to higher ground”.

The US Geological Survey and the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre both initially reported that the quake was greater than magnitude 7 before later revising their readings down to 6.8. However, the Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysical Agency of Indonesia has maintained that it had a magnitude of 7.4.

The quake unleashed a series of strong tremors which prompted panicked people to flee from buildings in the capital, Jakarta. There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties.

Social media has been flooded with eyewitness videos of the aftermath of the quake, as residents flee the area amid warnings that people should get to higher ground.

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