Earthquake —Stuff tells you what to do #EQNZ

Stuff (Fairfax): Large quake rocks central New Zealand
Last updated 20:48 21/07/2013
A severe magnitude 6.5 earthquake has hit central New Zealand this evening, damaging buildings, cutting power, trapping people in lifts and injuring at least two people.
GeoNet said it was centred in the Cook Strait, 20 kilometres east of Seddon at a depth of 17 kilometres. It struck at 5.09pm.
The Pacific Tsunami Centre in Hawaii said the quake did not generate a tsunami, but a number of smaller quakes have struck since – the latest, a 4.4 magnitude 25km east of Seddon at 8.27pm, followed closely by a 5.1 magnitude near Hanmer Springs.
The 6.5 magnitude quake was likely linked to a fault in the Cook Strait capable of generating far more severe shaking, GNS Science said.
If there were a sequence of events, as in Canterbury, EQC would have up to $6.5bn in cover. A spokesman for EQC minister Gerry Brownlee said EQC had “ample to cover any future event.”
Read more

(via Stuff)
What to do in an earthquake | Photos | Video: Powerful quake hits | What you need to know | Video: As the quake hit | Regional round up | Map: Recent quakes

Wellington Maritime Police senior launch master Barry Hart said a piece of previously reclaimed land along the industrial part of the waterfront had subsided into the sea, taking with it at least one shipping container. “The land has actually subsided at least a couple of metres… into the sea. One shipping container has gone into the water.”

3 News
More quakes shake North Island
Civil Defence: What to do after an earthquake

What you need to know:
• Magnitude 6.5 quake struck around 5:09pm Sunday
• Centred 20km east of Seddon, 17km deep
• GeoNet lists quake’s intensity as “severe”
• 4 injured in series of aftershocks
• Mercure on Willis St evacuated, believed to be slumping
• Featherston, Wakefield, Bolton, Willis and Webb streets closed
• All KiwiRail services suspended
• Wellington workers advised not to travel to work until at least midday Monday
• Victoria Uni, Whitireia polytech both closed until at least Tuesday

ONE News
At least one injured as severe quake strikes
Wellington’s emergency offices have been activated and USAR is on standby after a powerful earthquake shook central NZ.

GeoNet QuakesMap 21.7.13GeoNet Quakes Map 21.7.13 (click on link for updates)

As Wellington assesses itself and keeps people out of the CBD for safety reasons according to its Civil Defence Plan now in force following today’s significant earthquakes and tremors, readers have been hitting these links . . .

[older posts]
27.6.11 You keep asking: does Dunedin get earthquakes?
9.3.11 Dunedin earthquake proneness
4.9.10 Earthquake

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under #eqnz, Architecture, Business, Construction, Design, Economics, Events, Geography, Heritage, Media, People, Property, Site

21 responses to “Earthquake —Stuff tells you what to do #EQNZ

  1. ### ODT Online Mon, 22 Jul 2013
    Engineers check buildings for quake damage
    Wellington has escaped major damage after yesterday’s severe earthquake, but engineers were continuing to check buildings and infrastructure, Mayor Celia Wade-Brown says.
    More than 100 aftershocks have been recorded since the magnitude 6.5 quake which struck in the Cook Strait at 5.09pm, including a spate of tremors reaching between 4.5 and 4.9 in magnitude struck the middle of the country about 3.15am today.
    GNS Science has said there was a chance of an aftershock measuring 6 in magnitude in the next week.
    Four people were injured during the 20 second-long tremor. APNZ
    Read more


    ### ODT Online Mon, 22 Jul 2013
    35 buildings damaged by quake
    Wellington businesses should be back to normal tomorrow after a severe earthquake damaged buildings in the central city, the city’s mayor says.
    Engineers have spent the day assessing thousands of buildings in the CBD and have found 35 sustained damage. Mayor Celia Wade-Brown said damage was mostly minor and no structural damage had been discovered.
    This opened the way for businesses and organisations to reopen and workers and shoppers to return to the city, she told a press conference this afternoon.
    The magnitude 6.5 quake, which struck in the Cook Strait just after 5pm yesterday, shattered windows, damaged facades, cracked a road and caused reclaimed waterfront land to fall into the harbour.
    GNS Science seismologist Ken Gledhill said it was a “one in several decade event”. He said it was one tenth of the size of the Christchurch quake, which decimated its central city. There have been more than 100 aftershocks since the tremor, which Dr Gledhill said was “normal”. “This is not unusual behaviour for the Cook Strait region. It’s following the pattern we would expect.” APNZ
    Read more

    • Contrary to the views of other geophysicists pronouncing upon Dunedin, who to believe ?!

      ### July 22, 2013 – 6:41pm
      Low risk of earthquake for Dunedin
      A local geophysicist says Dunedin has a relatively low risk of being rocked by an earthquake, despite the events that affected Wellington. And the University of Otago academic says it’s too early to tell if a quake of the magnitude of yesterday’s event near Seddon will strike again.

      • ### ODT Online Tue, 23 Jul 2013
        Dunedin not immune to quakes
        By John Gibb
        Seismic activity on several fault lines near Dunedin could generate similar-sized earthquakes to the 6.5 magnitude quake which hit Wellington, seismologist Dr Andrew Gorman says. Dr Gorman is a senior lecturer in the University of Otago geology department and co-ordinates a university course on geological hazards, including those caused by earthquakes.
        Read more

      • Wellington back to business after quake (23.7.13)
        Investors’ confidence unshaken (23.7.13)


        ### ODT Online Tue, 23 Jul 2013
        Editorial: A familiar, frightening jolt
        While none of them were ”the big one”, the Seddon earthquakes at the weekend – especially that of about 5pm on Sunday evening – gave us all a jolt. Although felt by few in Otago, unlike in Wellington, the quakes’ repercussions have and will spread across the country – psychologically and financially. Generations grew up with the horror of the Hawkes Bay earthquake of 1931, which killed 256 people. It was prominent in the minds of the nation for many years, although this acute awareness eventually dissipated.

        Dunedin and the east coast could well be far enough away for the effects to be less. A higher danger there would appear to be from smaller nearby faults, or perhaps from a fault as yet unmapped. Especially prone would be areas with softer soils, like South Dunedin, the Taieri and reclaimed land.

        While serious earthquakes occurred in the intervening years, nothing on that scale rocked New Zealand until Christchurch in 2010 and 2011. Further generations, now, have witnessed the devastation and death that can be wrought. Further generations are now sensitised and more fearful of – even sometimes terrorised by – earthquakes.
        Read more


        TV footage in Wellington revealed very few people interviewed in the CBD and the suburbs bother to have a well-stocked emergency kit on hand. If this week’s quakes serve as a reminder to preparedness, well and good.

  2. Hype O'Thermia

    The idea of an emergency kit on hand sounds sensible until you think “which hand?” The one at work, the one in the car, on the bus, at a concert, at a cafe, in the lecture theatre??? At home, far far away from your ordinary everyday right and left hands?

    • Emergency kits. Anywhere you can secure one for yourselves, your family, your workplace, and for kits to be of help to others in your midst when or if it happens. Very simple to do.

      • ### July 23, 2013 – 7:12pm
        Aftershocks part of sequence
        A Dunedin seismologist says the several earthquakes an hour rumbling east of the South Island town of Seddon are part of an ongoing sequence.

  3. The lesson from Christchurch is bureaucrats and incompetents with red/yellow stickers are not arbiters of building safety. In Wellington, post quake hazards remain unknown. Under these conditions, employers cannot expect a full staff complement.

  4. Hype O'Thermia

    Hmmm, I wonder if Wellington people will be left with portaloos and gaping holes in their houses for as many years as Chch folk, or will the shorter distance to a House-full of MPs be associated with shorter waiting times for effective action?

  5. Hype O'Thermia

    Wasn’t that fascinating! Good news for us down this part of the country – doesn’t rule out other faults being active, including ones that we don’t yet know about, of course.

  6. Seddon —GNS confirmed the earthquake at 2.31pm yesterday was a magnitude 6.6 and was just 8km deep, 3km shallower than the magnitude 6.5 quake which hit the Cook Strait last month. APNZ

    Seddon Wellington quake map []

    Seddon Wellington quake map enlarged []Seddon/Wellington quake map and detail

    ### Last updated 14:54 17/08/2013
    Main road reopens after Seddon quakes
    Source: The Press
    The main road between Christchurch and Blenheim has reopened after yesterday’s 6.6 earthquake opened up large cracks in the ground between Seddon and Ward, but motorists are being warned care is still needed.
    Dozens of aftershocks have continued to rattle the top of the South Island and the Wellington region since yesterday’s biggest quake, which hit at 2.31pm, damaging houses in Seddon and Ward, and sending people fleeing in Wellington city.
    The 20 kilometre stretch of road between Seddon and Ward had also been hit by 500 cubic metres of earth that fell from banks above the road during the shaking. NZTA highways manager Frank Porter said contractors put in a ”heroic” effort to restore the highway after yesterday’s earthquake opened up several large cracks. Engineers had inspected all bridges and decided they were safe. The problem was with approaches to the bridges, and any slumps were being filled in. Further roadworks would be needed to patch up the the highway, with delays likely, Porter said.
    The rail line between Picton and Kaikoura has been closed while track and tunnels were checked. A Civil Defence spokeswoman said the line was expected to remain closed until at least tomorrow.
    A Marlborough District Council spokeswoman said the road between Blenheim and Seddon near the epicentre of quakes was open but drivers should take care.
    Fire crews were waterproofing damaged houses using tarpaulins, Civil Defence said.
    Water supply has been cut to several residential properties in the Grassmere and Blind River Rd areas and significant repairs would be required. Parts of Ward were also with out water.
    Only 10 houses were still without power out of the 6900 cut off in Marlborough yesterday. Marlborough Lines managing director Ken Forrest said six zone sub-stations switched off immediately after the magnitude 6.6 quake. This was what they were designed to do during quakes, for safety reasons. Staff then checked and progressively restored supply.
    Read more

    ● Anyone whose homes had been affected by the quakes should call 0800 damage (0800 326 243) or make a claim with EQC.


    Other news:
    17.8.13 ODT (via NZ Herald) ‘It was all just falling around me’
    17.8.13 ODT (via APNZ) Wellington warned to expect aftershocks

    16.8.13 Campbell Live [Video] Central quake similar to Chch
    Dr Kelvin Berryman, from GNS Science spoke to Campbell Live – he says the shaking would have felt more like the February 2011 quake in Christchurch. But the epicentre was somewhere below Seddon, a tiny Marlborough town on the road between Blenheim and Kaikoura. He goes on say the latest shakes will contribute to geotechnical knowledge and engineering for building performance.

  7. UglyBob

    I feel sorry for the folks in Seddon and Marlborough. Here in Wellington, the damage seems largely psychological. I know in my office building which has 13 levels, staff are really jittery, particularly those who work on the higher floors, which sway more significantly in a quake. I was on the 5th floor on Friday afternoon and we had minimal physical damage. The upper levels however took a hit with plaster cracking on the walls, which had only just been repaired from the 21 July quake. Traffic was gridlocked on Friday with no trains operating and I’m immensely grateful there was no obvious damage to road infrastructure and of course no loss of life.

    • Hi UglyBob – glad you and team are unscathed! Is your building (year of build?) designed to roll on its base? (taking it your building isn’t on the yellow list!) Or what’s the system that lets it to move with quakes, thereby safeguarding life and safe egress?

  8. UglyBob

    Yes it rolls on its base but it’s one thing to tell staff it’s designed to move and another thing to be inside during a significant quake.

    • The sensation is never pleasant, more so if you’re a visitor to the building and don’t know if it’s a ‘good building’ or a seriously bad one (until more time goes by) – as experienced in a highrise (at 8th floor level) during one of Christchurch’s largest quakes to affect Dunedin.

      • Quite a few searches at Whatifdunedin for Dunedin/Otago fault maps. These were published by Otago Daily Times along with their stories about Dunedin’s earthquake proneness, following the Christchurch quakes:

        Faults of the lower South Island - maps []Faults of the lower South Island – maps []

        Faults of Otago - known []Faults of Otago – known []

        • ### ODT Online Mon, 19 Aug 2013
          Claim fault off coast ‘real risk’
          By Rebecca Fox
          A Dunedin man is concerned Otago residents are not aware of a fault off the coast which could have an impact as great as the Alpine Fault in an earthquake.
          However, GNS Science says the fault is known but is considered inactive.
          After the recent earthquakes in Christchurch and north through to Wellington, Middlemarch man Phil Ford started to think about the anomaly he saw in maps of the sea floor off the east coast of the South Island. He is a University of Otago PhD student, and although it was not the topic of his research, he looked closer at the sea-floor maps, coming to the conclusion there was a fault running along the edge of the continental shelf off the east coast people should be aware of. ”If this is active, it is much more important to the east coast of the South Island.” He was not aware it had been mapped as the Waipounamu fault.
          Niwa declined to comment on Mr Ford’s paper until it had been peer-reviewed in a scientific journal.
          Read more

  9. Anonymous

    Holy f**k – Stuff is reporting a “magnitude 51 earthquake struck near Los Angeles”? I assume the country has just been wiped clear off the face of the planet. Could be a typo but will keep watching for the breaking news on the tele just in case.

    Quake shakes California
    Last updated 18:00 29/03/2014
    A magnitude 51 earthquake struck near Los Angeles on Friday, rattling a wide swath of Southern California, the US Geological Survey said.
    Read more

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