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Qld told to brace for more aftershocks

Earthquake Queensland
Geoscience Australia
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Queenslanders have been warned about more aftershocks after a 5.3-magnitude earthquake rattled the state’s southeast.

The surprise quake struck at 9.41am on Thursday with the epicentre in the Coral Sea, roughly 100km off the Fraser Coast, and was followed by 3.9 and 3.4-magnitude aftershocks.

It was one of the biggest seismic activities recorded in the state’s history.

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Geoscience Australia senior seismologist Dan Jaksa said larger aftershocks were also a definite possibility.

“The likelihood of another quake is always greater after the initial event,” he told AAP.

“The crust of the earth changes, stress points change and it can impact the earth in a funny way.”

Tremors were felt as far north as Yeppoon, near Rockhampton, and south to the Gold Coast.

Residents reported that buildings in Bundaberg’s CBD were swaying.

The quake caused precautionary evacuations in some Bundaberg businesses, including the seven-storey Auswide Bank building which also suffered cracks to windows.

No major damage was reported, although Sunshine Coast residents posted photos of cracked walls and tiles on social media.

Radio talkback lines lit up and Twitter was trending with people saying they felt tremors that rattled their houses and scared pets and wildlife.

Laine from the Fraser Coast was set to go fishing at Woody Point when his boat and the dock started rocking uncontrollably.

“All of a sudden the whole place was shaking,” he told ABC Radio.

“The ground was shaking, it was quite unbelievable. It went on for about 10 to 15 seconds.”

Other southeast Queenslanders reported they felt tremors lasting from five to 15 seconds.

Nick, from Sunrise Beach near Noosa, also told ABC Radio he heard a low rumbling sound from his kitchen.

“All the plates and things on the racks were rattling,” he said. “I looked out the kitchen window and I could see the swimming pool water was rippling.”

The largest recorded quakes in Queensland were in 1918 off the Gladstone coast, measuring 5.7 and 6.0 on the Richter scale.

A large 5.1-magnitude tremor occurred in Eidsvold in February this year but Mr Jaksa said there was no link between the two Wide Bay quakes.


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