According to the US Geological Survey, the powerful quake's epicentre was located 33 kms below the surface of the sea. The trembler hit around 139 kms east of Sulangan.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said that "An earthquake of this size has the potential to generate a destructive tsunami that can strike coastlines near the epicenter within minutes and more distant coastlines within hours."
Island nations in the Pacific region like Papua New Guinea and Guam besides the state of Hawaii (in the US) have been put on high alert in view of the trembler's intensity. There are no reports of casualties as yet.