Rare Earthquake Felt in Hong Kong

HONG KONG, Friday 19 November 2010 (AFP) – A rare earthquake rattled Hong Kong on Friday, prompting alarmed residents to call local authorities to report feeling the tremor, officials said.

There were no reports of any damage or casualties as a result of the 2.8-magnitude quake, which struck in the middle of the afternoon around 30 kilometres (20 miles) north of Hong Kong, near the Chinese city of Shenzhen.

“Quite a number of local residents from various parts of the territory reported to have felt this tremor,” the Hong Kong Observatory, the city’s meteorological agency, said in a statement.

The quake lasted several seconds, it added.

Hong Kong on average records only one or two locally-felt earthquakes a year, according to the Observatory, although neighbouring mainland China and Taiwan experience tremors that are both far stronger and more frequent.

The Observatory said that no-one was known to have died as a result of an earthquake in the densely-populated city since its records began.

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