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Cantabrians Woken by Large Aftershock |

January 1, 2012

Cantabrians suffered a swarm of significant aftershocks overnight, the largest a magnitude-5.5 shake striking shortly before 6am.

GeoNet has reported two earthquakes of similar magnitude striking at 5.45am, 12 seconds apart.

The 15-kilometre-deep quake cut power to thousands of Christchurch homes, particularly in Parklands and Burwood.

Power was cut to about 10,000 homes in Shirley, Dallington, Burwood, Spencerville and Richmond.

Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority chief executive Roger Sutton said that despite the loss of power, there did not seem to be any significant damage.

Everyone just wanted a good night’s sleep, he said.

The chief executive of electricity distribution company Orion, Rob Jamieson, said power was lost after a transformer automatically shut itself off.

Quakelive has ranked the shake as the 11th largest to hit the region.

A string of smaller shakes rapidly followed. Two of the largest, both magnitude-4.1 tremors, hit at 5.54am and 6.06am.

At 1.27am, a magnitude-5.1 quake, 15km deep, rocked the city, followed a few minutes later by a magnitude-4.3 shake that was 12km deep.

At 2.20am, a magnitude-3.5 shake, 20km deep, hit, and at 5.03am, a magnitude-3.8 tremor,  8km deep, struck.

The aftershocks were mainly centred in Pegasus Bay.

One Twitter user described the 5.1 quake as ”like a v violent train going through”.

Other Twitter comments included:

* “Restless night. These are some serious earthquakes.”

* “Not laying in bed listening to the birds, laying bed listening to the aftershocks.”

* “Found myself outside after that one. Don’t remember why I ran.”

* “I can’t stop shaking now so I can’t tell if the earth’s moving or it’s just me.”

* “Got teens out of bed and under a table – so it must have been big!”

Cantabrians Woken by Large Aftershock |

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