Quake hit near Orkney - US Geological Survey

Johannesburg - A 5.3 magnitude earthquake has struck, six kilometres east of Orkney in the North West, the US Geological Survey said on its website on Tuesday.

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SA Weather Service forecaster Puselatso Mofokeng said it did not have any information so far.

"We do not have a comment as such. We work with the Council for Geosciences, so once they have information then we will get it. At the moment we don't have any information except that we also felt the tremor," he said.

The Council for Geosciences could not immediately be reached for comment.

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eNCA reported that it was a 6.3 magnitude earthquake.

Engineering geologist Oliver Barker told the broadcaster the fact that its being felt as far out as KwaZulu-Natal showed that it was a "detailed-focused" event.

He said it was an earthquake, and went into details about the history of earthquakes on the sub-continent.


People immediately took to social media to report it.

"Who else just felt the earthquake. That was a crazy... tremor," said Johannesburg resident Adrian Patrick on Facebook.

"Here in Durban too," responded Byron David.

Citizens from Johannesburg to KwaZulu-Natal, North West, and Cape Town reported feeling the tremor.

Durban buildings evacuated

On Tuesday, reports of buildings being evacuated in Johannesburg, Umhlanga, and other cities were streaming onto Twitter.

Sapa's reporter in Durban said people in the 32 storey Durban Bay House, one of the tallest buildings in the city, was evacuated.

Hundreds of people were milling around Anton Lembede Street where the building is located in the city centre.

"I felt it. I thought I was going mad. I stood up and saw my colleagues rushing out," said Lungelo Xaba, who works on 17th floor of the building.

No reports of damage

Johannesburg emergency services spokesperson Robert Mulaudzi said the tremor was felt in most parts of the city.

"The city has not received any reports of injuries, or collapsed building. However we will be monitoring the situation."

The SA Weather Service and the Council for Geosciences could not immediately be reached for details on the tremor.

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