Tsunami alert after powerful quake hits off Indonesia

posted Jul 12, 2012, 11:03 AM by Tom Kachelman   [ updated Jul 12, 2012, 11:03 AM ]
A tsunami warning was issued for the entire Indian Ocean Wednesday after a powerful 8.7-magnitude earthquake was recorded off Indonesia's coast. The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake was centered 20 miles beneath the ocean floor around 308 miles from the provincial capital of Banda Aceh.
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Bruce Presgrave of the USGS told the BBC that the quake was caused by the earth moving horizontally, rather than vertically, therefore had not displaced large volumes of water.
"We can't rule out the possibility, but horizontal motion is less likely to produce a destructive tsunami"