Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search


No tsunami threat after 7.4 magnitude quake strikes

A magnitude 7.4 earthquake struck early this morning 710km north-east of Gisborne, just south of The Kermadecs.

The quake had a depth of 33km and was felt by almost 9000 people, mostly on the east coast from Gisborne and Napier to Christchurch, according to GeoNet.

It struck at 12.49am and was categorised as "weak".

Civil Defence says there is no tsunami threat to New Zealand.

It said New Zealand coastal areas may experience strong and unusual currents and unpredictable surges at the shore.

There is no tsunami threat to New Zealand following the M7.4 SOUTH OF THE KERMADEC ISLANDS earthquake. Based on current information, the initial assessment is that the earthquake is unlikely to have caused a tsunami that will pose a threat to New Zealand.

— National Emergency Management Agency (@NZcivildefence) June 18, 2020 

Soon after the quake the agency sent out a national advisory asking those in coastal areas to listen for updates on the radio or television, and to stay out of the water and away from beaches and shore areas. By 1.37am it was able to confirm the threat of tsunami had been ruled out.

Social media posts show some residents on the East Coast moved to higher ground following the alert, while others took to Twitter for advice on appropriate action.

One twitter user in Gisborne described the quake as "a decent shake", and a light sleeper even reported they felt the shake in Ashburton.

Yeah... I don't care how far off the coast it is. Can we please not have magnitude 7 quakes at 1am? #eqnz

— Cameron Hopkinson (@CatRelatedPun) June 18, 2020 

Gee that was quite a decent shake #eqnz here in Gisborne this morning. Hope everyone is ok out there.

— Tairāwhiti Museum (@Tairawhiti_muse) June 18, 2020 

Jeez and just like that the rain and wind kicks back in. Weird, eery pause for the #eathquaks #eqnz #whakatane

— Vanessa Immink (@vanimmink) June 18, 2020 

Gisborne Mayor Rehette Stoltz said there were no immediate reports of damage and she was expecting a further update during the morning.

Stoltz was one of those woken by the quake and described it as a sharp and strong jolt.

NO tsunami threat but take care - New Zealand coastal areas may experience strong and unusual currents and unpredictable surges at the shore.

— BOP Civil Defence (@BOPCivilDefence) June 18, 2020 

GNS seismologist John Ristau said the Kermadec Trench, where the quake was centred, has a lot of seismic activity.

"You've got the Pacific Plate and the Australian Plate colliding together, with the Pacific plate pushing or subducting beneath the Australian Plate.

"So having earthquakes - magnitudes 5s, 6s, and even 7s, is not unusual. This one's a little bit further south than we normally get."

The shallow depth of the quake meant an increased risk of tsunami, but the distance of the quake from New Zealand gave enough time for careful checks to rule out any danger, he said.

"At that depth, that's when we start running the risk of a tsunami. Once it starts to get shallow like this earthquake, then you have the potential that it could actually break the seafloor or cause enough destruction in the seafloor that it could generate a tsunami."

Aftershocks had been recorded after the quake, but they were too far away to feel from New Zealand, Ristau said.

"We've had seven that are magnitude 5 and above. It's quite possible that we'd still see an aftershock above magnitude 6 ... but even at a 6 it's highly unlikely people will feel it."

Click a link to play audio (or right-click to download) in
MP3 format.

The Transport Agency and police say there's been no impact on roads or reports of damage.

About an hour before New Zealand's 7.4 shock, a magnitude 5.1 quake struck in Tongan waters, about 100km east north east of the main islands.

© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Gordon Campbell: On Why We Shouldn’t Be Pushed Into Re-Opening Our Borders

I believe in yesterday as much as Paul McCartney, but it was bemusing to see the amount of media attention lavished last week on the pandemic-related musings by former government science adviser Sir Peter Gluckman, former Prime Minister Helen Clark ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Media Collusion With National’s Attack Lines

For most of the past week, any consumer of this country’s management of Covid-19 would think New Zealand was actually Brazil, or Texas. The media language has been full of claims of “botches” at the border, and laxness and inexcusable errors ... More>>

Gregor Thompson: Don’t Be Too Pessimistic About New Zealand’s Future.

With the first hurdle hopped our Government will be turning its attention to trying to soften the economic damage this pandemic has on our little archipelago. More>>

Eric Zuesse: U.S. Empire: Biden And Kerry Gave Orders To Ukraine’s President

Eric Zuesse, originally posted at Strategic Culture On May 19th, an implicit international political warning was issued, but it wasn’t issued between countries; it was issued between allied versus opposed factions within each of two countries: U.S. and Ukraine. ... More>>

The Coronavirus Republic: Three Million Infections And Rising

The United States is famed for doing things, not to scale, but off it. Size is the be-all and end-all, and the coronavirus is now doing its bit to assure that the country remains unrivalled in the charts of infection . In time, other unfortunates may well ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Altars Of Hypocrisy: George Floyd, Protest And Black Face

Be wary what you protest about. The modern moral constabulary are out, and they are assisted by their Silicon Valley friends in the Social Media club. Should you dare take a stand on anything, especially in a dramatic way, you will be found out ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Welcome Deaths: Coronavirus And The Open Plan Office

For anybody familiar with that gruesome manifestation of the modern work place, namely the open plan office, the advent of coronavirus might be something of a relief. The prospects for infection in such spaces is simply too great. You are at risk from ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Why Thinking Makes It So: Donald Trump’s Obamagate Fixation

The “gate” suffix has been wearing thin since the break-in scandal that gave it its birth. Since Watergate, virtually anything dubious and suggestive, and much more besides, is suffixed. Which brings us to the issue of President Donald Trump’s ... More>>