September 20, 2017

NEW ZEALAND: A Strong 6.1 Magnitude Earthquake Struck Wellington Just Hours After Mexico City Disaster. Island Also On The Pacific Ring of Fire. :o

The Daily Mail, UK
written by Sam Duncan
Wednesday September 20, 2017

New Zealand has been rocked by a 6.1 magnitude earthquake which struck southwest of Invercargill, followed by a 5.1 magnitude quake northeast of Seddon.

The quake caused 'moderate shaking' reported Geonet.

Initial classifications called it a strong quake, hitting 585km southwest of Invercargill at a depth of 10km.

Tremors may have been felt in Balclutha, Gore, Invercargill, Lumsden, Roxburgh, Te Anau and Tuatapere, while the Seddon quake was felt strongly in Wellington.

New Zealand authorities have issued a reminder to 'drop, cover, and hold' in the event of an earthquake.

The second quake was strong enough to be felt in nation's capital, with Metlink Wellington reporting all trains have been stopped.

A seismologist said the two quakes - which hit exactly an hour apart - were not linked.

People took to social media in shock to report feeling the quake and to check on on their family and friends.

The more distant earthquake measured 6.1, USGS reported.

GNS seismologist Dr Anna Kaiser said there was no link to the Mexico City earthquake that has left more than 100 people dead.

'It's certainly something that can't be scientifically proven,' she said.

Dr Kaiser said that although earthquakes can trigger aftershocks nearby, that is unlikely to be the cause of the Seddon quake.

'But obviously that's [aftershocks] not a mechanism that could explain the earthquake in the Cook Strait because it was too far away to be caused by that kind of stress change,' she said.

One shocked resident wrote that her city is a 'disaster waiting to happen' as Wellington was rocked by the latest in a long line of quakes.

'Rocking side to side in a rocky chair: the Wellington experience,' wrote another.

Others made light of the tremors, with one Twitter user writing: 'Yikes that shake I thought was me moving in my seat (need to lay off the donuts...) was actually an earthquake.'

No tsunami warnings have been issued.

'Then an ornament fell off the wall, and the dog ran outside and I ran outside too. I think we're just going to sit out here until my husband gets home from work,' she said.

Tim Struthers, a farmer from Seddon, reported feeling shaking during the earthquake, TVNZ reported.

'I was outside fencing and it shook the posts in the ground, everyone at home ran for the doors,' he said.

Mr Struthers said his family is 'almost immune' to seismic activity now, having lives through numerous earthquakes in recent year.

The first quake hit a seismically active area near a plate boundary where the Australian plate dives below the Pacific plate, the NZ Herald reported.

This boundary is called the Puysegur trench, and stretches for 800km between New Zealand's South Island and a point in the Southern Ocean 400km west of the Auckland Islands.

A similar 6.4 quake hit the trench in July, with an epicentre 190km southwest of the Snares Islands.

That quake was felt all around the South Island.
The Independent, UK
written by Michael Perry and Lydia Smith, Reuters
Wednesday September 20, 2017

An undersea earthquake with a magnitude of 6.1 struck in the remote Southern Ocean south of New Zealand on Wednesday, the US Geological Survey (USGS) said.

The quake, at a shallow depth of 10 km (6 miles), was recorded 211 km (140 miles) west of the sub-Antarctic Auckland Island, off New Zealand's South Island, the USGS said.

There were no tsunami warnings issued immediately after the quake.

The quake was felt strongly in the capital Wellington but no damage to buildings has been reported.

Train services were briefly disrupted in the area.

Two smaller quakes — a 4.7 and 5.0 magnitude — were also recorded off the New Zealand coast.

New Zealand is prone to earthquakes as the country is situated on the boundary of two major tectonic plates, the Pacific and Australian plates.

The news comes just hours after a powerful 7.1 earthquake struck Mexico City, toppling dozens of buildings and killing more than 200 people.

The quake hit while people were taking part in an earthquake drill, exactly 32 years after a major tremor killed thousands in the city.

President Enrique Peña Nieto confirmed more than 20 children had died and dozens were missing after a school collapsed.

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