Wellington Damaged By 4.2 Quake

There have been reports of minor damage after a short, sharp magnitude 4.2 earthquake rattled Wellington this morning.

The quake, which struck at 10.16am, was centred 10 kilometres west of Porirua, north of Wellington, at a depth of 30km.

Today’s quake was felt up the Kapiti Coast, north of Wellington. It could be an aftershock from the bigger jolt felt in the city on Saturday GeoNet duty seismologist Lara Bland said.

“It is possible that it is a bit of an aftershock [from Saturday’s 5.7 quake], but there is no cause for concern at this point. Wellington is right there on the [tectonic] plate boundary and it is a really active area. It is not really out of the ordinary.”

It is difficult to confirm whether it was an aftershock, she said.

“It is in the same region, but it is quite a bit further north.

In the first 20 minutes after the quake GeoNet had received 661 reports from people who felt the quake stretching from the Marlborough Sounds to the Wairarapa.

Kiwis are “much more on edge” of earthquakes since the disasters which unfolded in Canterbury, Bland said.

“You don’t want it to ruin your life, but a certain amount of worry is good if people do constructive things about it.”

Everyone should have a well-equipped emergency kit and an organised meeting place for our families, she said.

Meanwhile, Strathmore resident Davo, commenting on Stuff, said two windows fell out of his house and his chimney was cracked. He said it was the strongest earthquake he’d ever experienced.

A GeoNet spokesman said they received 661 reports on the quake in 20 minutes from people between Wairarapa and Marlborough.

Jas Sudan was on the 13th floor of a building and said everyone was nervous.

” Luckily it was only for a few seconds. As soon as we could understand what was happening, it was all quiet again.”

Aleisha Franklin described a rumble and then one big jolt.

“[It] got the heart racing.”

It is the second earthquake strongly felt in Wellington in the past week, after a quake west of Picton on Saturday was widely felt around the centre of the country and caused minor damage to the Meridian Building in Wellington.

Johnny Miller, of Newlands, moved to Wellington from Christchurch after the February 22 quake that devastated the Garden City.

He decribed this morning’s rattler as “a mild shock”.

“The 5.7 quake on Saturday was more like what was felt in Christchurch,” Millar said.

Ligia Horta, of Karori, said the quake was “really soft, just for some 2 secs” compared to Saturday’s jolt.

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