12 Feb 2017

Earthquakes shake NZ

1:32 pm on 12 February 2017

A number of earthquakes have rattled New Zealand this morning, including a "severe" magnitude 5.2 shake in North Canterbury.

5.2 earthquake near Culverdon

A 5.2 earthquake centred near Culverdon in North Canterbury. Photo: Screenshot / GeoNet

That earthquake struck 15km north-west of Culverden just before 9.20am this morning at a depth of 9km.

GeoNet reports it was felt by more than 1300 people.

There are no reports so far of any damage and one man RNZ spoke to said it was a good shake but nothing much happened.

Ross Barnes, who runs Mt Lyford Holiday Homes not far the epicentre, said there was no damage and it was "just a jolt".

"[It had] sort of swaying movement that didn't last that long but it was the most severe shock we've had for a while.

"And it put everything in perspective again that like 'oh, yep mother nature's still moving."

GeoNet said there was also a magnitude 3.2 shake about the same time near White Island. In a premliminary report it had said there was a magnitude 6.3 quake near Opotiki, but that was actually a "ghost quake".

It said information from the South Island quake tricked its system into thinking it was a larger shake.

At 4.14am a 4.2 magnitude quake struck 35 kilometres north-east of Seddon.

That was at a depth of 21 kilometres.