Written by on . Last updated August 15th, 2023.

Just before midnight of Friday June 16th, 2023, a shallow and significant Magnitude 5.3 earthquake hit in the North Pacific Ocean 94 kilometer from David, Panama. Another nearby country is Costa Rica.

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Earthquake Summary

This earthquake hit under water in the North Pacific Ocean, 50 kilometers (31 mi) off the coast of Panama, 94 kilometer south of David in Chiriquí. The center of this earthquake had a very shallow depth of 17 km. Shallow earthquakes usually have a larger impact than earthquakes deep in the earth.

Date and Time: Jun 16, 2023 11:58PM (Panama Time)
- Jun 17, 2023 04:58 Universal Time.
Location: 94 km south of David, Chiriquí, Panama.
Coordinates 7°35'30"N 82°18'53"W.
Map: Map of area around epicenter.
Map of area around epicenter. Click to open in Google Maps.
Magnitude: MAG 5.3
Detected by 66 stations. Maximum Error Range ±0.038 .
Depth: 17 km (11 mi)
A very shallow depth.
Tsunami Risk: Low tsunami risk
Earthquakes under MAG-6.5 do not usually cause tsunami's.
Always stay cautious - More info here.

Nearby towns and cities

This earthquake struck within proximity of multiple countries. Panama and Costa Rica are both within 300km distance of its epicenter.

The closest significant population center near the earthquake is Pedregal in Chiriquí, Panama. Pedregal is located 88 kilometer (55 mi) south of the epicenter.

A complete list of nearby places is included below.

Overview of nearby places

Distance Place
88 km (55 mi)
N from epicenter

Chiriquí, Panama.
94 km (58 mi)
N from epicenter

Chiriquí, Panama.
108 km (67 mi)
NNW from epicenter
La Concepción

Chiriquí, Panama.
157 km (98 mi)
ENE from epicenter
Santiago de Veraguas

Veraguas, Panama.
206 km (128 mi)
N from epicenter

Bocas del Toro, Panama.
239 km (149 mi)
ENE from epicenter

Coclé, Panama.
249 km (155 mi)
NW from epicenter
San Isidro

San José, Costa Rica.
278 km (173 mi)
NNW from epicenter

Limón, Costa Rica.
298 km (185 mi)
NNW from epicenter

Cartago, Costa Rica.
Cities and Towns around the epicenter of this earthquake.

Shaking reported by 3 people in 2 countries

People that feel an earthquake may report their experience to the US Geographic Survey. Currently, 3 people have reported shaking in 2 places in 2 countries (Panama, Costa Rica).We keep updating this article as more ground reports become available. You may report that you felt this earthquake here.

Places with most reports:

  • Remedios, Chiriquí, Panama: 2 people.
  • Jacó, Puntarenas, Costa Rica: 1 person.

4 Aftershocks detected

Since this main shock, 4 smaller aftershocks were detected. At a distance of 15 km (9 mi) west of this earthquake, an aftershock struck 16 hrs later. It measured a magnitude of 3.3

Before this earthquake struck, 1 smaller foreshock occurred. A 3.7 magnitude earthquake hit 4 hrs earlier nearby.

Overview of foreshocks and aftershocks

Classification Magnitude When Where
Foreshock M 3.7 4 hrs earlier
Jun 16, 2023 08:18PM (Panama Time)
99 km (61 mi)
NW from Main Shock.
Main Shock
This Earthquake
M 5.3 Jun 16, 2023 11:58PM
(Panama Time)
Aftershock M 3.2 13 mins later
Jun 17, 2023 12:11AM (Panama Time)
16 km (10 mi)
SW from Main Shock.
Aftershock M 3.2 12 hrs later
Jun 17, 2023 12:14PM (Panama Time)
88 km (55 mi)
NNW from Main Shock.
Aftershock M 3.3 16 hrs later
Jun 17, 2023 04:27PM (Panama Time)
15 km (9 mi)
W from Main Shock.
Aftershock M 2.6 2 days later
Jun 19, 2023 12:31AM (Panama Time)
72 km (44 mi)
NW from Main Shock.
Detected MAG2.5+ earthquakes within within 100km (62 mi), that occurred in the three days before and after the main shock.

More earthquakes coming?

The risk of aftershocks decreases rapidly over time. Usually, aftershocks are at least one order of magnitude lower than a main shock.

The chance that a significant earthquake like this one is followed by an even larger earthquake is not so large. On average, scientists estimate a 94% chance that a major earthquake will not be followed by an even larger one. It is still adviced to be aware of this risk

Read: How to Stay Safe during an Earthquake (cdc.gov).

Earthquakes like this happen often in the region

Earthquakes of this strength are very common in the region. This is the strongest earthquake to hit since April 4th, 2023, when a 6.3 magnitude earthquake hit 4 km (2.2 mi) further southwest. An even stronger magnitude 6.7 earthquake struck on October 20th, 2022.

In total, 39 earthquakes with a magnitude of 5.3 or higher have been registered within 300km (186 mi) of this epicenter in the past 10 years. This comes down to an average of once every 3 months.

Low tsunami risk

DISCLAIMER: We strongly suggest to closely monitor advice from local authorities with regards to tsunami risks. Our analysis is based on automatically collected data from external sources, and these might contain mistakes. In addition, earthquakes can cause landslides that may lead to a tsunami, or be a followed by another, potentially stonger, earthquake.

Based on early data it appears this earthquake was not strong enough (lower than MAG-6.5) to be likely to cause destructive tsunami's. However this earthquake appeared to have hit at a shallow depth under sea, so stay cautious and monitor advice from local authorities.

Tsunami Risk Factors

Factor Under Sea? MAG-6.5 or stronger? Shallow depth?
Explanation Almost all tsunami's are caused by earthquakes with their epicenter under sea or very near the sea. However stay cautious in coastal areas as earthquakes on land may cause landslides into sea, potentially still causing a local tsunami. Under MAG 6.5: Very unlikely to cause a tsunami.
MAG 6.5 to 7.5: Destructive tsunami's do occur, but are uncommon. Likely to observe small sea level changes.
MAG 7.6+: Earthquakes with these magnitudes might produce destructive tsunami's.
Most destructive tsunami's are caused by shallow earthquakes with a depth between 0 and 100km under the surface of the earth. Deeper tsunami's are unlikely to displace to ocean floor.
This Earthquake This earthquake appears to have struck under the sea. Not this earthquake.
This earthquake had a magnitude of 5.3. Earthquakes of this strength are unlikely to trigger a tsunami.
This earthquake occurred at a depth of of 17 km (11 mi). Earthquakes this shallow could trigger a tsunami.


Last updated 15/08/23 23:37 (). As more information on this earthquake becomes available this article will be updated. This article is automatically composed based on data originating from multiple sources.

  1. US Geographic Society (USGS): Earthquake us7000k95g
  2. European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre (EMSC): Earthquake 20230617_0000038
  3. Geonames.org: World Cities Database
  4. Google Maps: Static API
  5. Earthquakelist.org: Historic Earthquakes Database

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