A major undersea earthquake with a magnitude of 7.3 struck southeast of the Philippines on Tuesday (Jan 10), the US Geological Survey (USGS) said.
The quake was measured by USGS to be at a depth of 613km and no tsunami alert has been issued.
However, there have been reports of people in Sabah – including in Sandakan and the city centre – evacuating buildings after strong tremors were felt.
The quake occurred in the Celebes Sea, less than 500km from Semporna on Sabah’s east coast.
According to The Malay Mail Online, the Sabah Electricity office and Centre Point Sabah shopping mall were among the buildings evacuated in the Sabah city centre.
The New Straits Times, which noted that the tremors were felt just after 2pm for about 10 seconds, said staff of the Sandakan federal building in Jalan Labuk were also asked to evacuate.