4.5 earthquake hits Hawaii this morning; no tsunami threat

The U.S. Geological Survey’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) recorded a magnitude-4.5 earthquake just offshore of the Island of Hawaii at 4:42 a.m. this morning.

The earthquake was centered about 4 miles east of Papaikou at a depth of 26 miles. A map showing its location is posted on the HVO website at http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/hvo/earthquakes/.

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Moderate shaking, with maximum Intensity of V, has been reported across the Islands of Hawaii and Maui. At that intensity, significant damage to buildings or structures is not expected. The USGS “Did you feel it?” service (http://earthquake.usgs.gov/dyfi/) received over 280 felt reports within an hour and a half of the earthquake.

The depth, location, and recorded seismic waves of the earthquake suggest a source due to bending of the oceanic plate from the weight of the Hawaiian island chain, a common source for earthquakes in this area. Aftershocks are possible and could be felt.

“HVO monitoring networks have not detected any significant changes in activity on Kilauea or Mauna Loa volcanoes due to the earthquake,” said HVO seismic network manager Brian Shiro.

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According to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center, there is no tsunami threat from this earthquake.

For information on recent earthquakes in Hawaii and eruption updates, visit the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory website at http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/hvo/earthquakes/.

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