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RE: New Zealand Quake
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A strong earthquake has shaken New Zealand, generating a small tsunami and briefly putting the country on alert.
The US said a 7.8-magnitude quake hit off the south-west tip of New Zealand, 161km (100 miles) west of Invercargill at a depth of 33km.

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A strong magnitude 7.8  earthquake occurred at 09:22:32 (UTC) on Wednesday, July 15, 2009, off the West coast of the South Island,  New Zealand, 150 km WNW of Invercargill, at a depth of 35 km.

Location 45.721°S, 166.643°E

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A strong magnitude 6.1  earthquake occurred at 23:34:49 (UTC) on Saturday, April 26, 2008,  in the Auckland Island region,  215 km  NW  from Auckland Island, New Zealand, at a Depth of  10 km

Location         49.057°S, 164.165°E

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NZ quake
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NZ quake2
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A strong magnitude 6.6  earthquake occurred at 07:55:22 (UTC) on Thursday, December 20, 2007,  in the North Island of New Zealand region,  40 km  SSW of Gisborne, New Zealand, at a Depth of  67.9 km

Location         38.992°S, 177.776°E


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A strong magnitude 6.0  earthquake occurred at 21:28:27 (UTC) on Monday, October 15, 2007,  in the South Island of New Zealand region,  95 km  WNW of Queenstown, New Zealand, at a Depth of  38.6 km

Location     44.780°S, 167.556°E

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Fiordland earthquake no tsunami risk to NZ
There is no tsunami risk to New Zealand from a shallow earthquake strongly felt in the lower South Island early this morning.
The Director of the Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management, John Hamilton, said that the Ministry has received information about the earthquake from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre (PTWC) in Hawaii and GNS Science in New Zealand.
PTWC issued a bulletin stating that there is no tsunami risk to Pacific coastlines and GNS Science has confirmed there was no localised tsunami.

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A strong magnitude 6.8  earthquake occurred at 12:29:37 (UTC) on Monday, October 15, 2007,  in the South Island of New Zealand region, 105 km  WNW of Queenstown, New Zealand, at a Depth of  25.4   km

Location     44.713°S, 167.464°E

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A strong magnitude 6.6  earthquake occurred at 09:47:51 (UTC) on Sunday, September 30, 2007,  in the Auckland Islands region, 240 km  WNW of Auckland Island, New Zealand, at a Depth of  10  km

Location     49.377°S, 163.221°E

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A strong magnitude 7.3  earthquake occurred at 05:23:34 (UTC) on Sunday, September 30, 2007,  in the Auckland Islands region, 200 km  NW of Auckland Island, New Zealand, at a Depth of  11  km

Location     49.416°S, 163.843°E

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Edgecumbe earthquake
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New Zealand’s most damaging recent earthquake – a magnitude 6.1 jolt that struck eastern Bay of Plenty on the afternoon of March 2, 1987 – occurred 20 years ago today.
Known as the Edgecumbe earthquake, it caused heavy damage in the towns of Edgecumbe, Te Teko, Kawerau, Thornton and Matata. In Edgecumbe the ground-shaking cut deep gashes in roads and footpaths, damaged river embankments, tipped a diesel locomotive off its tracks, and ripped power transformers, weighing up to 20 tonnes each, from their mountings.
In the Rangitaiki Plains, west of Whakatane, the quake tore up the ground to create a spectacular 7km-long fault rupture that was, in places, 4m deep and 2m wide. The rupture extended down several kilometres into the earth.
About 200sq km of the Rangitaiki Plains subsided by up to 2m as a result of the quake. Property damage totalled $400 million ($690 million in today’s terms). Remarkably no-one was killed, but a handful of people suffered injuries.
Centred near Matata, the quake was felt over most of the North Island. It was preceded by a number of foreshocks in Matata and Thornton, and followed by hundreds of aftershocks over several weeks.
One of the largest foreshocks, a magnitude 4.9 jolt, occurred seven minutes before the main shock and was largely responsible for the evacuation of many buildings. Lives were probably saved as a consequence.
In 1987 it took over an hour for scientists to work out the location, magnitude and depth of the Edgecumbe earthquake. They relied on a sparse network of aging instruments.
New Zealand’s earthquake and volcano monitoring capability has developed substantially in the last 20 years. Today seismic data from around New Zealand is transmitted by radio and satellite and arrives within seconds at GeoNet data centres in Lower Hutt and Wairakei. This enables scientists to identify the location, magnitude and depth of an earthquake within minutes.
The GeoNet project, funded by the Earthquake Commission and operated by GNS Science, has seen major advances in the way geological hazards are monitored in New Zealand. Not only are there more monitoring instruments, many of them solar powered, but they are far more sophisticated and robust than those in use in the 1980s.
A significant advantage of the upgraded network is that it provides higher quality data in real-time.
The rapid availability of information on earthquakes through the GeoNet website gives responding agencies, such as civil defence operators, the ability to prioritise in getting assistance to affected communities.
GeoNet Project Director, Ken Gledhill, said historical evidence showed that the risk to New Zealanders from geological hazards is higher than the last 60 years would indicate.

"New Zealand’s earthquake activity is comparable with California and Japan. But because there have been relatively few large earthquakes in recent decades, many New Zealanders won’t have experienced a damaging earthquake" - Dr Ken Gledhill.

On average, New Zealand can expect a magnitude 6 quake once a year, a magnitude 7 quake once a decade, and a magnitude 8 quake once every century.
The GeoNet network of instruments records about 16,000 quakes in and around New Zealand each year. Most are small, but between 1 and 2 percent are big enough to be felt by people.

GNS Science is a government-owned research and consultancy company focused on securing economic and social benefits from natural processes occurring in the Earth’s crust. As well as improving the understanding of hazards such as earthquakes, volcanoes, landslides, and tsunamis, GNS Science helps in the development of geothermal energy, oil and gas exploration, mineral exploration, and groundwater supply to New Zealand towns and cities.

Press Release: GNS Science

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