An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.6 struck today off Jan Mayen island in Arctic waters between Greenland and Norway, geological monitoring services said. No damage or injuries were reported. The European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre and the US Geological Survey said the quake struck at 9:43am EDT, followed by a 5.2-magnitude temblor eight minutes later. The USGS said the stronger quake hit at a depth of 5.3 miles, 58 miles northwest of Jan Mayen, a Norwegian island with a research station but no permanent population. The quake could be felt on the island, but didn't cause any damage or injuries, said an electronics engineer at the research station.
"We watched the mountain as the loose stones and shale came sliding down," he said, adding that there are currently 44 people on the island involved in research and maintenance work. A Norwegian seismologist said Jan Mayen, about 370 miles east of Greenland, lies near a fault line and is often exposed to earthquakes, though he couldn't remember any previous temblors the size of today's.