South East Asia: Tsunami terror grips region.

Mass panic ensues after quake, but no casualties.

The hard lessons learned from the 2004 tsunami were put to the test as thousands of residents and tourists all along the Andaman coast rushed to higher ground following yesterday’s 8.6-magnitude earthquake off Indonesia.

Tsunami alarms and warnings sounded across the region following the huge earthquake at 3.38pm Bangkok time. The earthquake was centred 431km off the city of Banda Aceh. It was followed two hours later by an 8.2-magnitude underseas quake.

The tremors, which were felt by office workers in Bangkok, prompted authorities in Thailand, Indonesia, India, Malaysia and other countries around the Indian Ocean to issue evacuation warnings.

Thai authorities sounded alarms in six provinces: Phuket, Krabi, Phangnga, Ranong, Satun and Trang.

The alert was cancelled several hours later, with no reports of damage or casualties made although small waves 10cm high were reported off Phangnga.