NZ Local News

Magnitude 5.1 earthquake strikes Canterbury region near Methven, felt by more than 4600 people including Christchurch residents

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A 5.1 magnitude earthquake has struck Canterbury tonight, with more than 4600 people reporting the sharp jolt.

The 9.21pm quake was centred near the small township of Methven, about 100km west of Christchurch City, at a depth of 5km.

GeoNet said it may have been felt in Akaroa, Amberley, Arthur’s Pass, Ashburton, Christchurch, Culverden, Fairlie, Geraldine, Greymouth, Hokitika, Methven, Mount Cook, Oxford, Timaru, Twizel, Waimate, and surrounding localities.

“That was a rumbly one! Chandeliers swinging here…. about 10km inland from us here in Mount Somers,” one texter told Newstalk ZB.

“Good lot of rolling and a couple of good shudders here in Ross, on the west coast,” another added.

Others said they could feel the shake in Christchurch, Ashburton, Hokitika, and Winchester.

“I am in Timaru just felt the quake quite a good tremor,” said one texter.

Another poster to X, formerly Twitter, said they could feel “minor aftershocks” after the initial jolt.

GeoNet described the shaking as “light”.

A 5.1 magnitude earthquake west of Christchurch has been reported as being felt by nearly 5000 people. Photo / GeoNet
A 5.1 magnitude earthquake west of Christchurch has been reported as being felt by nearly 5000 people. Photo / GeoNet

In December, a ‘strong’ magnitude 4.4 earthquake hit the South Island 100km north of Christchurch and was felt across the city.

The earthquake occurred at 9.30am on December 9 and was centred 5km south of Culverden and 12km deep, GeoNet said.

More than 550 people, mostly in Christchurch, told the GeoNet site they felt the quake.

It came about two months after a magnitude-6.2km quake hit Geraldine south of Christchurch in what was the strongest earthquake to hit New Zealand last year.

More than 14,000 people posted reports on GeoNet saying they felt that September 20 quake .

It was described as a long, rumbling quake and didn’t cause any violent jolts.

It was the first decent shake to be felt in Canterbury — a region devastated by the 2010-11 earthquake sequence — for some time.

The magnitude-6.3 quake of February 22, 2011, killed 185 people and caused widespread damage to Christchurch’s CBD and many suburbs.

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