For my followers that aren’t based in New Zealand (which is the majority of you), we sure do get our fair share of quakes in this part of the world. This is primarily to do with the fact that a subduction zone runs right through the middle of our country. This means we have quite a few volcanoes spread over the country, particularly around Auckland and off the coast of New Zealand, but also a lot of fault strands that run under a lot of our major cities.
Early this morning, earthquakes hit various parts of the country. The affected areas included Christchurch, Kaikoura, Wellington and Auckland. With hundreds of aftershocks occurring since the big quake at about midnight, these quake swarms have resulted in emergency services deployment, coastal tsunami warnings and losses of telecommunication reception in various places. With the aftershocks still ranging from mid-3’s to mid-5’s on the richter scale please ‘check-in’ on Facebook if you are in the affected areas.
Working for Regional Government in Canterbury it is safe to say that we are getting our fair share of Civil Defence calls. With offices based in Kaikoura we still have not heard that some of our staff, and friends are safe. So please pray that these people check in over the course of today.
A 7.5 magnitude earthquake hit near Hanmer Springs at midnight. While the inner city of Christchurch seems alright, roads in and out of the city have been affected and are damaged. Wide gaps have opened up in some of the roads and a tsunami warning has only just been lifted for the area.
With residents of Christchurch suffering the effects of big earthquakes in 2010, the events from last night have shaken a few people to say the least. If you are based in Christchurch please keep an eye on the Civil Defence Emergency webpage for updates, and stay away from coastal areas. While the tsunami warning has been lifted it is still not a good idea to head down to the beach to watch the waves, or to head down for a game of frisbee.
There has been quite a massive slip on the main highway into Kaikoura which has stopped people being able to access Blenheim and Kaikoura. This is one of the worst hit areas, and the damage appears to be widespread. Emergency services have been deployed in Kaikoura, but a lot of people are still trying to get a hold of loved ones. Kaikoura District Council has set up a welfare stand and notified that there is a lot of damage to power lines, sewer ponds and roads in the area. There are instances of liquefaction and road blocks are in place. A lot of people were evacuated overnight, but are able to now head home. It will be a long day ahead for those in Kaikoura, so please pray for the residents, and also their loved ones that can’t yet get a hold of them to check they’re alright.
The TSB Arena and BNZ building have been seen to have taken the most damage. Aftershocks are still being felt in Wellington, and some of the coastal areas were evacuated in the night due to water movement within the bay being concerning. Some central streets have been closed due to a bit of rubble falling off some buildings.
For full information visit the New Zealand Herald
Sources of material used:
Map of New Zealand Subduction Zone from Decoded Science
Wellington information from the New Zealand Herald