An earthquake measuring 2.3 degrees on the Richter scale hit the area near the village of Taba, 80 kilometres away from Hail City, at 6.18 am.

According to a reort in Arabic language daily Okaz, tremors which lasted for 16 seconds sparked panic among Taba villagers, who did not allow their children to go to school.

The National Centre for Earthquakes and Volcanoes director Hani Zahran confirmed the quake and dismissed any volcanic activity in the region of Hail, urging people not to panic.