Indonesia early Wednesday issued a tsunami warning after an undersea quake measuring 7.6 on the Richter scale rocked the country's northern Aceh province.
The tremor hit the province around 01.30 a.m. People living in the coastal areas of the province have started fleeing to safer areas up to one kilometre away. The epicentre of the quake was at 350 km southwest of Meulaboh town and at a depth of 10 km under the seabed, Xinhua quoted the Meteorology and Geophysics Agency as saying.
People living in Meulaboh and Ulele towns have been urged to keep away from the coast by up to one kilometre. Ibnu Sa'ad, head of the province's emergency unit, said the authorities have ordered people to leave the coastal areas.
The local Metro TV reported that the quake has triggered panic in Meulaboh. In a devastating Indian Ocean tsunami in December 2004, over 170,000 people were killed in Aceh province. The over all toll of the affected countries was estimated at about 230,000 people.