Tremors shook Kota Kinabalu and other parts of Sabah’s west coast on Friday (5th June) after a magnitude 5.9 earthquake hit near Ranau district.
Initial reports from the Malaysian Meteorological Services Department said the quake struck 16km northwest of Ranau at 7:17am. The US Geological Survey put the Richter scale at 6. No tsunami warning was issued.
It said that the strong quake struck at a depth of 10km, with its epicentre located 19km from the town of Ranau, and 54km from Kota Kinabalu.
Apart from the state capital, the tremors were felt in the northern Kudat and Kota Marudu districts, and as far away Beaufort in the south. The tremors shook buildings and rattled windows prompting people to run out from their houses, shops, and even at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport terminal.
The National Earthquake and Tsunami Centre, in a statement, said the tremor was felt in most places in Sabah, including Ranau, Tambun, Tuaran, Pedalaman, Kota Kinabalu and Kota Belud.
Immediate damages caused by the earthquake could not be immediately ascertained, but fellow Malaysian netizens are circulating images from the aftermath of the quake.
— Achafoo (@Achafoo) June 5, 2015
Earth Quake this morning in Sabah, Malaysia. 5.6.2015. pic.twitter.com/vvSvep1XiZ
— GOne Madden (@noryed8700) June 5, 2015
Photos of damages caused by the 6.0 magnitude earthquake that hit Sabah at 7.20am earlier this morning. pic.twitter.com/opaKHqCmXV
— Mohd Ameerul Amde (@MohdAmeerulAmde) June 5, 2015ADVERTISEMENT
More photos of the damage caused by the 6.0 magnitude earthquake that hit Sabah earlier in the morning. pic.twitter.com/5fbF39hqMK
— Mohd Ameerul Amde (@MohdAmeerulAmde) June 5, 2015
According to The Star Online, although no casualties have been reported as at time of writing, the fate of several climbers at the peak in Mount Kinabalu remains unknown as cracks and boulders were reported to have been dislodged following the 7.17am earthquake in Ranau.
Sabah Park officials said they have no reports of any casualties but have directed everyone to climb down from the 4,095m mountain peak as a safety precaution.
Reports of rock and landslips emerged from people at the foothill and officials are waiting for the situation to settle before determining the next course of action.
More to come as we get more information.