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USGS HVO Press Release
2019-04-13 Press Link

Magnitude-5.3 earthquake east of Kalaoa, Island of Hawai‘i


The U.S. Geological Survey's Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) recorded a magnitude-5.3 earthquake on Saturday, April 13, 2019, at 5:09 p.m. HST.

The earthquake was located about 20 km (12 mi) east of Kalaoa on the Island of Hawai‘i at a depth of 13 km (8 mi). A map showing the location of the earthquake is posted on HVO's website at https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/observatories/hvo/hvo_earthquakes.html. More details are available at the National Earthquake Information Center website at https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/hv70907436/.

Light to strong shaking, with a maximum Intensity of VI on the Mercalli Intensity Scale in the area of Waikoloa, has been reported across the Island of Hawai‘i and as far away as O‘ahu. The USGS "Did you feel it?" service (http://earthquake.usgs.gov/dyfi/) received over 1000 felt reports within the first hour of the earthquake.

The USGS ShakeMap estimates shaking up to Intensity VII in the immediate vicinity of the epicenter. At that intensity, moderate damage to buildings or structures is possible. Hawai‘i County Civil Defense reports that authorities are responding to reports of rockfalls along Highways 19 and 11. For more information on expected shaking, see the USGS ShakeMap at https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/hv70907436/shakemap.

Three aftershocks were recorded within an hour of the earthquake, including a magnitude-3.0 event approximately 11 minutes following the mainshock. Additional aftershocks are expected.

The earthquake has caused no detectable changes in activity at Kīlauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes. "Although the earthquake occurred under the east margin of Hualālai volcano, there is no indication at this time that the event is related to volcanic activity," said geophysicist Brian Shiro, HVO's seismic network manager. "The location and depth of this event suggest it is likely related to flexure or settling of the crust beneath the weight of the island."

According to the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (PTWC) no tsunami was generated by the earthquake.

For more information on recent earthquakes in Hawai‘i and eruption updates, visit the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory website at https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/hvo/.


Daily updates about ongoing eruptions, recent images and videos of summit and East Rift Zone volcanic activity, maps, and data about recent earthquakes in Hawaii are posted on the HVO website at https://volcanoes.usgs.gov/observatories/hvo.

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