5.8-magnitude quake rocks Australia

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Canberra, Aug 18 (IANS) A 5.8 magnitude earthquake rattled Australia’s central and north Queensland on Thursday, officials said.

Geoscience Australia said the earthquake struck off the coast of Bowen about 2.30 p.m.(local time), ABC Australia news reported.

The quake posed no tsunami threat, but a large portion of the Queensland coast felt the tremors, Senior seismologist Jonathan Bathgate said.

“We know it’s been felt all the way from the Sunshine Coast up to north of Townsville,” Bathgate said.

“At this stage we have had almost 1,000 reports come in to our earthquake alert centre here in Canberra of people having felt the earthquake,” he added.

By 5.00 p.m. (local time), there were six aftershocks recorded in the same area as the initial quake, the highest of them magnitude-4, ABC Australia reported.

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Police have not had any reports of major damage, however minor cracking has occurred at some properties.



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