New Zealand withdraws tsunami alert soon after earthquake of magnitude 7.2; authorities warn of 'minor sea level fluctuations'

The Kermadec Islands of New Zealand, struck by a strong earthquake, are the peaks of volcanoes, some active, that rise above sea level and are often rocked by strong tremors.

Agence France-Presse June 16, 2019 08:50:07 IST
New Zealand withdraws tsunami alert soon after earthquake of magnitude 7.2; authorities warn of 'minor sea level fluctuations'
  • Authorities had initially forecast 'a threat to beach, harbour, estuary and small boat activities'

  • eight minutes later, New Zealand's civil defence organisation gave the all-clear, withdrawing the tsunami alert

  • The Kermadec Islands are the peaks of volcanoes, some of them active, that rise above sea level and are often rocked by earthquakes

Wellington: A powerful 7.2-magnitude earthquake stuck near the remote Kermadec Islands northeast of New Zealand Sunday, briefly prompting a tsunami warning.

After initially forecasting "a threat to beach, harbour, estuary and small boat activities", New Zealand's civil defence organisation gave the all-clear eight minutes later.

New Zealand withdraws tsunami alert soon after earthquake of magnitude 72 authorities warn of minor sea level fluctuations

A powerful 7.2-magnitude earthquake stuck near the remote Kermadec Islands northeast of New Zealand Sunday, briefly prompting a tsunami warning. Google Maps

The earthquake was given a preliminary magnitude of 7.4, but later downgraded to 7.2 by the US Geological Survey.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center also lifted its tsunami warning for parts of the South Pacific but said "minor sea level fluctuations may occur in some coastal areas near the earthquake".

The earthquake struck at 10.55 am at a depth of 10 kilometres some 928 kilometres north-northeast of the New Zealand city of Tauranga in the North Island.

The Kermadecs are uninhabited apart from a few New Zealand conservation workers based on Raoul Island, the largest in the area.

The islands are the peaks of volcanoes, some of them active, that rise above sea level and are often rocked by earthquakes above magnitude 7.0.

In recent years, they experienced one in 2006, another in 2007 and two in 2011.

The Kermadecs are part of the Pacific Ring of Fire, a hotbed of volcanic and earthquake activity at the intersection of several tectonic plates.

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