There were precursor earthquakes in the area beginning six days ahead of the 8.0.
<<< MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, Feb. 3, 2013) – A series of strong earthquakes have struck off the Solomon Islands in rapid succession on Sunday, but no damage was reported and no tsunami warnings were issued.
The US Geological Survey says the strongest of the tremors hit at 5:58 am local time, measuring 6.1 and located 68 kilometers southwest of Lata in the Solomon Islands.
It was the ***fifth time in four days*** that an earthquake with a magnitude of over 6.0 has struck in the region.
Earlier, a magnitude 4.8 quake was recorded 180 kilometers south east of Pagan in the Northern Marianas in the western Pacific.
There were no tsunami warnings and no immediate reports of damage or casualties.
On Saturday, Australian seismologists recorded a quake measuring 6.6 and centered out to sea, about 70 kilometers southwest of Lata in the Santa Cruz islands.>>>
[link to pidp.org