A 5.9 magnitude earthquake has rattled southeast Australia, damaging buildings in the city of Melbourne.

The earthquake was also felt in neighbouring South Australia and New South Wales (NSW).

It was followed by two aftershocks of 4.0 and 3.1 magnitude.

While this is one of Australia's largest earthquakes in recent years, it has not caused significant damage.

Large earthquakes are uncommon in Australia because the continent lies centrally on a tectonic plate.

This quake struck at a shallow depth of 10km (6.5 miles), according to Geosciences Australia. It was initially measured at 6.0 magnitude before being revised to 5.9.

The geoscience agency said Australia experiences a potentially damaging earthquake defined as above 6.0 magnitude about every 10 years.

Melbourne, the country's second largest city, is home to about five million people.

The city is currently in lockdown due to a recent wave of coronavirus cases, BBC news reported.

Source: Oman News Agency