Indonesia is rocked by a powerful earthquake, but no casualties have been reported

JAKARTA, Indonesia — A strong undersea earthquake rocked Indonesia’s northernmost province of Aceh on Saturday, but there were no immediate reports of serious damage or casualties, and officials said there was no threat of a tsunami.

Witnesses said many people ran out of their homes to higher ground when the pre-dawn quake hit, only to later receive text messages saying there was no tsunami threat. In 2004, a massive earthquake off the coast of Aceh triggered a powerful tsunami that killed around 230,000 people in 10 countries.

The US Geological Survey said Saturday’s 6.2-magnitude earthquake was centered 40 kilometers southwest of Meulaboh, a coastal city in Aceh province.

Indonesia’s Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency measured the earthquake at a magnitude of 6.4. Variations in past measurements are normal.

Indonesia is a seismically active archipelago of 270 million people that is frequently hit by disasters such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and tsunamis.

In February, a 6.2-magnitude earthquake in West Sumatra province killed at least 25 and injured more than 460. In January 2021, a 6.2-magnitude earthquake in West Sulawesi province killed more than 100 people and injured nearly 6,500.