SYDNEY - A small tsunami hit the Solomon Islands on Wednesday after a major 8.0 magnitude undersea earthquake sparked a tsunami warning for several South Pacific island nations and placed many more nations including Australia and Indonesia on alert.

The quake struck at a very shallow depth of only five km (three miles) and was located 340 km (211 miles) east of Kira Kira in the Solomons, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Hawaii said.

The center said a tsunami measuring 0.9 metres (three feet) hit the Solomons following the quake.

The Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corporation cited a witness who said water was covering an airstrip in Lata, in Temotu province, but there were no immediate reports of damage or casualties.

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