It’s a relief to say that there have been no claims of either damage or injury.
The magnitude-7.3 quake struck north of Timor-Leste in the southern Banda Sea, according to Geoscience Australia (GA).
The earthquake occurred immediately before 4 a.m. local time, or 5:30 a.m. AEDT, according to the Bureau of Meteorology, and there was no tsunami danger to the Australian mainland, islands, or territories.
Hadi Ghasemi, the senior seismologist at GA, said seismic waves travelled hundreds of kilometres to shake the Top End capital.
“Our modelling, as well as the first reports, all point to a moderate to a mild level of ground shaking,” he added.
“We do not anticipate any harm to well-constructed buildings.”
He said it was common for individuals to experience the impacts of earthquakes of magnitude 5 or above, “so it’s no surprise that it was extensively felt by 1,900 people in Australia”.
Residents of Darwin who have been shaken go to social media.
When the impact reached Darwin, locals reported feeling the ground shake for roughly a minute, with some reported hearing a rumbling sound.
Residents of apartment complexes in the city and northern suburbs reported swaying.
According to independent meteorologist Karl Lijnders, the length of the effect was unexpected.
“It just kept going, and going, and going, the swaying and rocking and rolling,” he said to ABC radio.
“That length of time was pretty rare for this region of the globe.”
“This morning’s one startled me because of how long it lasted and the sounds that followed it, which was really a churning and buzzing kind of thing.”
Mr Watts said that at first, he thought the earthquake was caused by a jet passing above, but quickly realised it was caused by something much more powerful.
“I heard people racing around the house, fairly enthusiastic, it was quite fascinating,” he said.
“Our kid just checked to see whether her fish was okay, and that was the end of it.”
Every year or so, earthquakes in the area above northern Australia hit Darwin, although they seldom cause major damage.
When a magnitude-7.2 earthquake shook the Banda Sea last year, certain CBD buildings were evacuated as a precaution.
On Thursday morning, there were reports of shaking in portions of Arnhem Land and inland in Kakadu National Park.
It follows a bizarre week in the Northern Territory.
Territorians were warned on Boxing Day that a category one storm may hit the coast near Darwin, but the cyclone was reduced to a tropical low before reaching the Top End.
Since the NT’s borders reopened on December 20, officials have registered more than 50 new incidents of interstate arrivals and close interactions, with more likely in the following days.