Earthquakes Near Wanganui

A burst of earthquake activity has occurred near Wanganui during the past week.

Two earthquakes near Wanganui overnight were the latest events in a burst of activity that began to the north of the city on January 25th.

At 3:24 p.m. on January 25th a magnitude 3.4 earthquake struck 10 km north-west of Wanganui at a depth of 40 km. It was followed by a shallower 12 km deep magnitude 3.8 quake located 20 km south-west of the city at 5 p.m. on January 29th.

A magnitude 3.7 quake then struck last night, Saturday the 2nd of February 2008. The 10:54 p.m. quake was located 30 km south of Wanganui at a depth of 12 km. At 3:23 this morning, Sunday, a magnitude 3.2 quake struck 20 km south of Wanganui at a depth of 5 km.

Other earthquake activity near fault structures which run off the western coast of the lower North Island and head inland to mark the western boundary of the Taupo Volcanic Zone before they head out into the Bay of Plenty has occurred during the same period. Quakes of 4th magnitude have been reported near Porirua, Raetihi, Matata and a magnitude 3.7 in the Marlborough Sounds. The deep magnitude 4.5 quake near Matawai on January 28th illustrates the changing stresses near the interface between the Australian and Pacific tectonic plates in the area.

[Compiled from data provided by the Geonet project and its sponsors EQC, GNS Science and FRST.]

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