A powerful and shallow earthquake struck Wednesday off Indonesia’s Sumatra island, sending panicked residents rushing from their homes in a region hit hard by quakes and tsunamis in the past.
The epicentre was several hundred kilometres from the Mentawai Islands, a small island chain southwest of the country’s main western island of Sumatra.
There was panic in some areas, but officials said there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage.
The closest major city on Sumatra to Wednesday’s was Padang. An AFP journalist there said people ran from their homes and fled to higher ground by motorbike, car or on foot.