Earthquake occurred near Loihi seamount


A 4.3-magnitude earthquake, about 4 miles east-northeast of Loihi seamount, was recorded by the U.S. Geological Survey’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory at 5:39 p.m. Saturday. The earthquake was located at a depth of 11 miles and there was no aftershock within the first 12 hours of the earthquake.

The earthquake was felt across Hawaii Island. However, there were no observable affects on other volcanoes, according to HVO.

Loihi seamount is an active volcano situated on the sea floor south of Kilauea Volcano about 19 miles from the shoreline of Hawaii Island. The seamount is 3,180 feet below sea level. It was the site of a flurry of earthquakes Dec. 6 and 7, 2005. More than 100 earthquakes were located by the HVO; the largest was a 3.5-magnitude earthquake. There was also a 4.7-magnitude earthquake on Jan. 18, 2006.

Two earthquakes occurred in 2005 beneath Loihi: a 5.2-magnitude earthquake on July 17 and a 5.1-magnitude event on May 13. These two earthquakes are the largest recorded in the general Loihi region since a 4.9-magnitude earthquake occurred on Sept. 13, 2001.

In July 1996, during a large earthquake swarm, more than a thousand events were located beneath the Loihi area. Between July 27 and 28, 1996, nearly 700 events were recorded during a 24-hour period. After the swarm, scientists on submersible dives to Loihi concluded that the earthquakes were accompanied by a significant collapse of the summit area and an apparent eruption.

Daily updates about Kilauea’s ongoing eruptions, recent images and videos of summit and east rift zone volcanic activity, and data about recent earthquakes are posted on the HVO website at hvo.wr.usgs.gov.