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Insane moment ABC's Melboune studio hit by an earthquake live on air

News Breakfast presenters have had two very different responses to an earthquake that hit the ABC's Melbourne studio. 

The magnitude 5.8 quake was felt across Melbourne at 9.15am on Wednesday, with residents reporting feeling strong tremors for around 30 seconds. 

Presenters Michael Rowland and Tony Armstrong were forced to stop mid-program when the studio began to shake. 

'Is it an earthquake or a structural thing?' a concerned Mr Rowland is heard asking. 

Presenters Michael Rowland (left) and Tony Armstrong (right) were forced to stop mid-program when the earthquake began to shake the ABC's Melbourne studio on Wednesday

The anxious presenter grabbed his phone and prepared to leave the studio as his smiling co-host remained seemingly unbothered by the tremors. 

'Let's go,' Mr Rowland said to the newsroom. 

'That was a big one.' 

'That's still tremoring,' Mr Armstrong added. 

Twitter users were quick to poke fun at the pair with many comparing the hosts' polar-opposite reactions to the large earthquake. 

"Let's go!" What a bad ass reaction from Michael!' one user said. 

'For fans of Tony, all we see is him holding down that desk and saving the building,' another woman tweeted. 

'He was cool, calm and collected. As always,' a third agreed. 

Mr Rowland tagged his co-host in a post to social media following the quake tweeting: 'That was quite a post-show chat with @Tonaaayy_.'

Pictures have emerged of a Betty's Burgers franchise partially collapsed on Chapel St in Melbourne's inner-city after a magnitude 5.8 earthquake

The epicentre of the quake was 10km deep near Mansfield, a small town on the foothills of Victoria's alps, with after-effects felt in parts of Canberra, Sydney, and even Tasmania. 

Houses in Melbourne shook and movement could be felt in Geelong and even at Canberra's Parliament House and buildings in Sydney's CBD.  

Premier Dan Andrews confirmed the quake and asked residents to stay alert and take advice from the Emergency Victoria website. 

'Keep an eye on the Emergency Victoria website for the latest information.' 

The natural phenomenon was echoed by a 4.0 magnitude aftershock 18 minutes later with more predicted to follow. 

The earthquake is the biggest Victoria has experienced since European settlement (1834) and there will be aftershocks, a seismologist told ABC Radio Melbourne. 

Damage was seen to a shopfront on Chapel Street in South Yarra, with footage revealing rubble from the impacted building strewn across the pavement.

There are reports of damage in Prahran, Brunswick, West Melbourne and Albert Park and to the exterior of Betty's Burgers on Chapel Street in Windsor. 

Bemused locals were seen racing out of their homes to assess the damage. 

The earthquake is the biggest Victoria has experienced since European settlement (1834) and there will be aftershocks, a seismologist told ABC Radio Melbourne (pictured, damaged buildings on Chapel Street following the earthquake)

The epicentre of the quake was in Mansfield in eastern Victoria but the shockwaves were felt as far south as Tasmania and as far north as NSW

Victoria's State Emergency Service said if residents have building damage or require assistance to expect a wait time, as phone lines may be busy.  

Prime Minister Scott Morrison then fronted a press conference in Washington DC - where he is taking part in the Quad leaders summit - to reveal the 'rare event' had so far led to no injuries.

'These are very rare events in Australia and I am sure people would have been disturbed by that, particularly in the most immediate area effected,' he said.

'The agencies at a state government level are there, responding and the federal government will provide the support that is necessary.'

A homeowner near Leongatha in South Gippsland revealed her glass of her shower began to shake when the earthquake hit and described the sound like a 'jet engine'. 

'I grabbed my granddaughter and held her tight,' the woman said. 'It was very frightening.'

Alice Murphy, a resident of Fitzroy three kilometres north of the Melbourne CBD, was working at her laptop when the tremors began.

'For a second I thought it was a tram passing by or a huge gust of wind, but then the walls were shaking and the candles were bouncing off the mantlepiece,' she said.

'It lasted about 20 seconds and then everyone spilled out onto the street to make sure they hadn't imagined it!'

Premier Dan Andrews confirmed the quake at 9:47am on Twitter and asked residents to stay alert and take advice from the Emergency Victoria website 

Social media users in Melbourne reacted with shock after the earthquake shook the Victorian capital, with many taking to Twitter to confirm their suspicions

Australia and New Zealand's biggest earthquakes

1989 Newcastle earthquake

The magnitude 5.6 quake that struck in the suburbs of Newcastle, NSW is widely regarded as one of Australia's worst natural disasters.

Thirteen people died and more than 160 were injured - with the damage cost estimated at $4billion.

The earthquake damaged more than 35,000 homes and 147 schools.

2011 Christchurch earthquake

A 6.2 magnitude earthquake struck Christchurch, on New Zealand's south island, on February 22, 2011 - claiming the lives of 185 people and leaving an estimated 2,000 with injuries.

The quake struck 6.7km southeast of the city at a depth of 6km.

Upbeat Aussies were quick to make light of the natural phenomenon which coincided with the third day of planned anti-vax protests in Melbourne as construction workers rally against jab mandates.  

A meme quickly began circulating online showing Dan Andrews in China, making a call to 'unleash the earthquake' in Victoria to punish residents.

One person joked the earthquake was caused by the 'Dan Andreas Fault' - a name play on the 1200km long San Andreas Fault that runs through California.

Others joked that premier would be cracking down on Covid restrictions in light of the destruction caused by the natural phenomenon.

'Dan Andrews to lock down Victoria until we eliminate earthquakes,' one person tweeted.

'The earthquake has been fined for going outside of a 5km radius,' another added. 

The SES is yet to make an assessment of the damage but confirmed to AAP the quake was '6.0 on the Richter scale and emanated from Mansfield. There is no tsunami threat'. 

One meme circulating online joked the earthquake was ordered by Premier Dan Andrews (pictured) following days of anti-vax protests across Melbourne

 Damage was seen to a shopfront on Chapel Street in South Yarra, with footage revealing rubble from the impacted buildings strewn across the pavement

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