New Zealand earthquake: The worst-affected areas

A powerful 7.5-magnitude earthquake in Canterbury has rocked a number of regions overnight, with tsunami waves reaching New Zealand's east coast and aftershocks causing havoc nationwide.

Two people are confirmed dead, and quakes have been recorded as far north as Pukekohe, just south of Auckland, meaning a large portion of the country has been affected by the tremors.

A tsunami warning was in place for much of the country overnight but was downgraded to a marine and beach threat shortly after 8am. The threat is in place from Napier and Hastings to the Waitaki Coast.

Schools and early childcare centres from Wellington to North Canterbury have been advised to close until structural engineers have carried out building checks.

For schools that remain open, the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) says all NCEA students will have to sit their scheduled exams today. If their school is closed, they will be given a derived mark based on other results in the subject.

All of the country's major airports remain open.

Traffic is expected to be worse than normal in a number of regions, as all trains in the South Island and most south of Palmerston North are cancelled until further notice.

Below is a rundown of the worst-affected areas.


Earthquake Minister Gerry Brownlee revealed that some people may have died as a result of the earthquake in Kaikoura - but says "the extent of that is not yet reported".

The fire service has since confirmed that one person died when the Elm Homestead collapsed in Kaikoura. Another person was injured in the collapse.

A massive slip caused by the tremors has left Inland Kaikoura Rd totally obstructed, and large cracks have appeared in a number of roads in the neighbouring coastal town of Cheviot.


The capital was hit by small tsunami waves and a warning remained in place overnight.

An Interislander ferry that crossed Cook Strait is stranded in Wellington Harbour after the drawbridge that gets passengers onto the mainland partially collapsed and fell into the water.

The Fire Service says TSB Arena and the BNZ Centre on the waterfront have sustained the most damage.

People in Lyall Bay were urged to evacuate after surging was detected in the water, sending people running for the hills.

Those planning on travelling to Wellington CBD this morning have been advised to stay out until the afternoon.

Residents of nearby Pahiatua have been urged to conserve water and the council has put in a total hosing ban until the bore has been checked. The bore will be out of commission and in the meantime, the town's water will come from a back-up river supply which has been chlorinated.


The small north Canterbury town is feared to be one of the worst-hit spots in the country, with another person killed in nearby Mt Lyford.

An earthquake saw a slip on the Waiau Ferry Bridge, leaving it badly damaged. There are reports the bridge has sunk as much as 40cm under the weight of the slip.

One man was left unable to reach his father when he discovered the landslide.

The epicentre of the quake, Hanmer Springs, is just a few kilometres away from Waiau.


The Marlborough township has been hit by dozens of aftershocks this morning, which have matched Kaikoura in severity - with some stronger than magnitude-5.
More aftershocks are likely to be felt in Seddon.


Tsunami sirens were ringing out throughout the southern city for much of the night.
People close to the coast were urged to evacuate and head to higher ground, which is advice that appears to have been taken onboard. Newshub