Tonga is struck by a magnitude 6.6 earthquake

A 6.6 magnitude earthquake shook Tonga on Monday morning. 

The quake was at a depth of 112 km and the epicenter was at a distance of 70km northwest of Fangale’ounga, Ha’apai on Foa Island, the U.S. Geological Survey reported. 

The quake was recorded around 9.30am local time and authorities think strong shaking was probably felt near the epicentre. 

A second 5.0 magnitude earthquake was recorded an hour later, northeast of ‘Ohonua on the ‘Eua Island.

Tongan officials have urged people to ‘evacuate immediately inland, to high ground or to the third level of a steel or concrete building until the threat has passed’.

A 6.6 magnitude earthquake shook Tonga around 9.30am local time on Monday 

‘A strong earthquake has occurred near Tonga and felt in all of Tonga. A dangerous tsunami could occur in minutes,’ the Tongan Meteorological Service said.

The government urged Mariners to move to deep ocean away from reefs. 

They also advised caution in unusual waves and abnormal tides and sounded tsunami sirens on the island.

Tongan officials have now confirmed that tsunami risks have passed. 

There are no reports of damage or casualties. 

Tonga sits on the Pacific ‘Ring of Fire,’ the arc of seismic faults around the Pacific Ocean where much of the world’s earthquake and volcanic activity occurs. 

The Bureau of Meteorology has said there is no tsunami warnings or immediate danger to Australia.

More to come.