Strong/Severe aftershocks continue to hit Wellington and surrounding areas #eqnz

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QuakesMore then 16 strong and severe quakes are rattling the Lower North Island centred around Seddon, though in the last few minutes they have been decreasing in severity. The same area which saw a severe quake hit only a month ago. Reports of damage are slowing starting to come in, there have not yet been any reports of fatalities or trauma. Twitter is exploding with whanau expressing their fear and concern for friends and loved ones near where the quakes have been taking place.

There have been other strong quakes in Murupara and Taihape.

(Stuff.co.nz)

THE CITY GROANED

On Wellington’s waterfront, cranes swayed and the city seemed to groan.

Joggers stopped in their tracks and struggled to stand. Amanda Beeslaar, a visitor from Auckland, said the quake was ”terrifying”.

”It felt like a jet plane coming over and them it just started shaking. I thought the earth was going to open up.”

Sam Stanley was in the NZX building when the quake hit.

”I feel a bit queasy, it was swaying so much. I waited about ten seconds and got under my table, then we decided to get out.”

MARLBOROUGH SHAKEN

State Highway 1 between Blenheim and Kaikoura has been closed.

There were initial reports of severe building damage in the Seddon area and parts of Marlborough.

People were leaving town, walking down the middle of the street to avoid buildings and power lines. Train services were halted.

A spokeswoman for St John’s southern communications centre said ambulance crews had responded to a fall in Blenheim following the quake, but it was not known if it was related to the shake.

Staff were “not particularly busy” otherwise, but had been checking stations around the South Island. “Everyone’s OK,” she said.

Early reports of a collapsed house in Seddon proved to be incorrect.

AFTERSHOCKS

A magnitude 5.7 aftershock centred 5km southeast of Seddon and 8km deep hit about six minutes later.

Another large aftershock, magnitude 5.6, struck at 2.45pm. It was centred 15km southeast of Seddon at a depth of 5km.

A quake closer to Wellington struck at 2.50pm. Geonet said the 4.8 magnitude quake was 15km south of the city at a depth of 5km.

INFRASTRUCTURE HIT

Telecom said there was major congestion on phone lines of all major networks and urged users to text not call. Phone lines were being checked for damage.

All train services in the Wellington and Marlborough regions were cancelled.

Wellington Airport has reopened after a runway inspection. Wellington’s City Gallery has been evacuated, pending a building inspection.

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