Tsunami Watch for Samoa after Third Large Quake near New Zealand

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Samoa is on Tsunami Watch after a major magnitude 8.0 earthquake struck roughly 600 miles northeast of New Zealand on Thursday afternoon, triggering concerns of a potentially damaging tsunami.

It’s the third major earthquake in less than eight hours on the Kermadec Fault, which passes east of New Zealand. A magnitude 7.3 hit near New Zealand early on Thursday, followed by a 7.4 about 560 miles to the north a few hours later.

Tsunami waves of 10 feet or greater are possible in the Kermadec Islands, with 3 to 9 foot waves in French Polynesia.

American Samoa, the Cook Islands, Fiji, New Zealand and the Pitcairn Islands can expect water levels fluctuating by up to three feet.

A tsunami advisory was issued for American Samoa as well.