A 7.1 magnitude quake shook the northeastern coast of New Zealand on Thursday, with the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (PTWC) issuing tsunami warnings across the country. There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.
The New Zealand National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) advised residents near the coasts of North Island to evacuate their homes and move to the nearest high ground or far inland. The PTWC warned tsunamis could reach coastal areas of up to 300 km from the epicentre.
The quake occurred 189 km northeast of the city of Gisborne at a depth of 89.5km near the epicentre. Multiple aftershocks of magnitudes 4.7, 5.0, 4.0, 3.8, 3.7, 2.2 were reported within hours apart after the 7.1 quakes.
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said the quake measured a 7.2 magnitude while European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre (EMSC) and United States Geological Survey (USGS) recorded it at 7.3 magnitude.
According to USGS, Australia-Pacific plate boundary extends in the region of New Zealand from south of Macquarie Island to the southern Kermadec Island chain. As a result earthquakes occur quite frequently as the country is situated in the collision zone of Pacific Basin Ring of Fire.