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Port Hedland, WA: Miners shaken up by 5.3 . magnitude earthquake

Miners wake up to earthquake measuring 5.3 on the Richter scale that hits major Australian resources, leading some to believe an explosion has gone horribly wrong

  • Miners in Western Australian city shaken up by 5.3-magnitude earthquake
  • Earthquake on Saturday about 17 km from Marble Bar in East Pilbara at 9pm
  • Residents can recall ‘rumbling’ the ground for up to a minute










Miners in a Western Australian town have been awakened by an earthquake measuring 5.3 on the Richter scale, raising fears that an explosion had caused the disruption.

The earthquake struck around 9:00 PM on Saturday 125 km southeast of Port Hedland, the second largest city in the Pilbara region.

Residents in Port Hedland Karratha, Newman and Tom Price recall feeling the ground “rumble” for 20 seconds to a minute.

The massive earthquake hit around 9:00 PM on Saturday 125 km southeast of Port Hedland, the second largest city in the Pilbara region (pictured, a highway near Port Hedland)

Miners in a Western Australian town have been awakened by a massive earthquake measuring 5.3 on the Richter scale (photo, worker at an iron ore mine in the Pilbara region)

Miners in a Western Australian town have been awakened by a massive earthquake measuring 5.3 on the Richter scale (photo, worker at an iron ore mine in the Pilbara region)

“An earthquake measuring 5.4 on the Richter scale was reported in the evening near Marble Bar, East Pilbara, Western Australia,” Volcano Discovery reported.

The website said the quake struck 17km from the Marble Bar at a ‘shallow depth’ of about 10km.

“Shallow earthquakes are felt more strongly than deeper ones because they are closer to the surface,” the website reported.

“Maybe it caused minor to moderate damage.”

The website said moderate shaking “probably occurred” at Marble Bar, while “weak shaking” could have been felt in Nullagine, about 78km from the epicenter.

Residents were also rocked by several aftershocks, measuring 2.6, 3.1 and 3.2, in the two hours after the first quake.

Residents were also rocked by several aftershocks, measuring 2.6, 3.1 and 3.2, in the two hours after the first quake (photo, ship moorings in Port Hedland)

Residents were also rocked by several aftershocks, measuring 2.6, 3.1 and 3.2, in the two hours after the first quake (photo, ship moorings in Port Hedland)

Volcano Discovery reported that the quake struck about 17 km from the Marble Bar in East Pilbara at a 'shallow depth' of about 10 km

Volcano Discovery reported that the quake struck about 17 km from the Marble Bar in East Pilbara at a ‘shallow depth’ of about 10 km

Residents of Port Hedland, Karratha, Newman and Tom Price can recall 'rumbling' the ground for up to 20 seconds (shown, excavators move iron ore in Port Hedland)

Residents of Port Hedland, Karratha, Newman and Tom Price can recall ‘rumbling’ the ground for up to 20 seconds (shown, excavators move iron ore in Port Hedland)

Newman resident Kimba Barry said she initially thought the rumble came from one of the nearby mines.

“We thought it might be something in the mine, but then it took way too long,” she told the… Western Australia.

“The rumble got louder and the windows rattled like crazy.”

The Hedland SES unit had not received any calls for help 30 minutes after the earthquake, and there have been no reports of damage to date.

Western Power has reported no power outages in the affected areas.

The Joint Australian Tsunami Warning Center has reassured residents that there is no risk of a tsunami to the mainland or surrounding areas.

More to come.

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