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.”
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.”
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
GeoNet 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 . . .
Posted by Elizabeth Kerr