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Huge earthquake at 7.3 on Richter scale sparks 'move immediately' warning in New Zealand

NewsHuge earthquake at 7.3 on Richter scale sparks 'move immediately' warning in New Zealand

New Zealand has been rocked by a huge magnitude 7.1 quake struck in the early hours of this morning. The quake struck near the Kermadec Islands about 900 kilometers (560 miles) northeast of New Zealand’s North Island at a depth of 49 kilometers (30 miles), according to the US Geological Survey.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said the quake posed no threat to Hawaii and the wider Pacific.

A localised potential for a tsunami passed without any confirmed impact.

New Zealand’s National Emergency Management Agency said it was assessing whether the quake could affect New Zealand but gave its standard advice for people to move away from coastal areas if they felt a long or strong quake.

The Kermadec Islands are uninhabited except for Raoul Island where New Zealand scientists sometimes stay over to carry out meteorological observations or weed control work.

The islands are the site of frequent large earthquakes.

They were geologically formed from a ridge that rose from the ongoing collision between the Pacific and Australian tectonic plates.

New Zealand as a whole is located within the Pacific Ring of Fire, a region around the ocean’s perimeter in which volcanic and seismic activity is commonplace.

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