South Korea was hit by a rare earthquake which struck South Korea’s southeast on the afternoon of Wednesday, Nov 15. Reaching a magnitude of 5.4-magnitude, it was the second most powerful quake on record in a country that seldom experiences significant tremors.
The earthquake was felt across much of the country including in the capital Seoul, struck at the shallow depth of nine kilometres (six miles) near the industrial city of Pohang at around 2.30pm (0530 GMT), the Korea Meteorological Administration said. The Korean peninsula is rarely troubled by significant quakes, but seismic activity is closely monitored because a spike in activity is often the first indication that North Korea has carried out a nuclear test.
Photos and video footage sent to local TV stations showed crumbled street walls, furniture violently shaking inside people’s homes and people rushing out of buildings in panic.
Wednesday’s quake was followed by multiple aftershocks including a 4.3-magnitude tremor that hit about two hours later.
Seven people were injured, Seoul’s public administration ministry said, but they warned that number could rise because the quake was shallow.