Bookmarked Mansfield magnitude-5.9 earthquake shakes Melbourne, regional Victoria, southern NSW, Sydney, Canberra, Adelaide and Launceston (ABC News)

Buildings have been damaged but there are no reported serious injuries after a magnitude-5.9 earthquake and three smaller quakes occurred near Mansfield in Victoria’s north-east this morning.

There was an earthquake south-east of Mansfield and north of Rawson around 9:15am on 22nd September. It was my first experience of an earthquake, even though I live 150km away. I was in a video conference at the time with colleagues in other parts of Melbourne and it was weird as the wave progressively struck each of us.

It is common for earthquakes to occur in Australia, as Mark Quigley and Januka Attanayake explains:

In Australia we get magnitude 5.8-6.0 or greater earthquakes, on average, once every four to 20 years. The highest since instrumental records began in Australia was the magnitude 6.6 quake in the Western Australia town of Meckering in 1968.

Earthquakes are considered a low probability, high consequence hazard — the rate of earthquakes is low compared to our seismically active neighbours in New Zealand, PNG, and Indonesia, but we have vulnerable infrastructure such as unreinforced masonry buildings that present a risk.

It was interesting to see the various responses to the situation: