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Healing the fracture in Hope Fault | Alastair Thompson - 500 Words

Healing the fracture in Hope Fault ...or... Why we all need a crash course in understanding aftershocks.

On Sunday night New Zealand experienced what is probably the biggest Earthquake since 1931. It's a gnarly quake. Not behaving like a traditional shake. It doesn't fit a standard mould. But together - if we help each other, and have our wits about us - we can definitely get through.

In tweets and maps Scoop's Alastair Thompson looks at the rather odd aftershock pattern that has emerged in the 24 hours since the Kaikoura Earthquake.

This is not a straight forward earthquake....
Earthquakes of this magnitude don't really allow you to simply move on. It will be nice if all we need to do is rebuild a few roads, houses and railway lines - but as Christchurch taught us, its not that simple.
The aftershocks from this quake could well last for years - and this time it's Wellington bearing the brunt of this not Christchurch. In fact hear in Wellington we could already be three and half years into this drama.

Australian seismologist and University of Melbourne Associate Professor Mark Quigley - interviewed yesterday by @JohnJCampbell on Radio NZ's Checkpoint show - has written an article in which he suggests that there is a connection between this event and the 2013 quakes that residents of Wellington are being given a very unpleasant reminder of over the past 30 hours.

"The region affected by the recent earthquake has been one of the most seismically active in New Zealand over the past few years, including earthquakes that occurred as part of the Cook Strait earthquake sequence in 2013. It is likely that these sequences are related given their close spatial and temporal association," Professor Quigley writes.

But its not completely new either... just quite a lot bigger.
Wellingtonians who remember 2013 will recall that it was no walk in the park. Damage to buildings took months to fix. Insurance markets locked up for several months making it nearly impossible to sell lots of properties - and a partment values plummeted, and even now haven't really recovered.+
But this quake is at an entire order of magnitude larger. Bearing that in mind we will save ourselves lots of trouble if instead of thinking that this event is already over - and all that lies ahead is a recovery operation.

In fact if we fully open our eyes we will see that the fracturing of Hope Fault is starting to look a little menacing - not just to Kaikoura, Hamner, Waiau, Culverden, Clarence and Cheviot but to Wellington.

The Twitstory Follows.

ENDS

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