Strong earthquakes rock South Pacific

Thursday's quakes struck near the Solomon Islands in the Pacific Ocean.
Two major earthquakes struck 15 minutes apart Thursday morning near the Solomon Islands in the Pacific Ocean, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

The first quake, with a magnitude of 7.8, struck at 9:03 a.m. (6:03 p.m. ET) at a depth of 35 km (22 miles) and an epicenter 295 km (180 miles) north-northwest of Luganville, Espiritue Santo, Vanuatu. The second quake, with a magnitude of 7.3, struck at 9:15 a.m. (6:18 p.m. ET) at the same depth and an epicenter of 590 km (365 miles) northwest of Port-Vilia, Efate, Vanuatu. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center issued an expanding regional tsunami warning and watch for parts of the Pacific near the first earthquake’s epicenter. The center also issued a tsunami advisory, meaning the possibility of a tsunami exists, for Hawaii and said further evaluation of the event could see the threat alert elevated. Have you been affected Share photos, video on iReport

There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries. The Santa Cruz islands are about 1,200 miles west of the Samoan Islands, which were devastated last week by earthquake and tsunami damage that killed more than 165 people.