New Zealand earthquake: 7.3-magnitude tremor sparks tsunami warning

A shallow, powerful earthquake has struck off the coast of New Zealand, prompting warnings of the threat of a tsunami.

People who felt a long or strong quake are being advised to move to the nearest high ground, or as far inland as possible.

Tremors were felt across the region from the quake whose preliminary magnitude was 7.3, officials say.

The quake, 148 miles (238km) northeast of Gisborne ’s North Island, , struck 6.2 miles (10km) deep under the sea, at 2.27am local time on Friday, waking many people.

The National Emergency Management Agency tweeted: “Anyone near the coast who felt a LONG or STRONG quake should MOVE IMMEDIATELY to the nearest high ground, or as far inland as you can #EQNZ”.

The agency said it was assessing whether the quake had created a tsunami that could affect New Zealand, and that it would provide an update as soon as the initial assessment has been completed.

New Zealand’s seismological agency GeoNet described the quake as “severe”, saying it had received 60,463 reports of shaking.

The US Geological Survey initially put the quake at 7.3, then revised it down to 6.9.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said tsunami waves were possible within 186 miles (300km) of the quake’s epicentre. 

Tremors from the earthquake were recorded on the other side of the world, in Scotland.


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