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Kenya cancels tsunami alert

2012-04-11 20:24

Nairobi - Kenya cancelled a tsunami alert on Wednesday after the feared dangers following a powerful earthquake and aftershock off the coast of Sumatra were deemed to have eased.

Authorities had warned people living on the coastal regions not to take to the sea and ordered schools in the area closed.

"The tsunami threat issued earlier has diminished. Therefore the tsunami alert issued earlier by this department is now cancelled," the meteorological department said in a statement.

"However, since the arrival time of the wave was expected to coincide with high tides at our coastline, danger to boats and other small vessels will continue for several hours due to rapid currents," it added.

The 8.6-magnitude earthquake was followed by a massive aftershock, measuring 8.2, off the Indonesian island had raised a new tsunami threat.

Experts with the US Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre in Hawaii, told AFP the first tsunami on Wednesday was "not anywhere near" as large as the devastating waves that struck Asia in 2004 and Japan last year.