2011 Christchurch earthquake

A major earthquake occurred in Christchurch on Tuesday 22 February 2011 at 12:51 p.m. local time (23:51 UTC, 21 February).[1][10] The Mw6.2 (ML6.3) earthquake struck the entire of the Canterbury region in the South Island, centred 6.7 kilometres (4.2 mi) south-east of the central business district.[11] It caused widespread damage across Christchurch, killing 185 people,[7][8] in New Zealand's fifth-deadliest disaster.

2011 Christchurch earthquake
Damaged Catholic cathedral two months after the earthquake
UTC time2011-02-21 23:51:42
ISC event16168897
USGS-ANSSComCat
Local date22 February 2011 (2011-02-22)
Local time12:51 p.m. NZDT
Magnitude6.2 Mw(GCMT)[1]
6.1 Mw(USGS)[2]
Depth5 km (3.1 mi)
Epicentre43.583°S 172.680°E / -43.583; 172.680[2]
Port Hills near Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand
Areas affectedNew Zealand
Max. intensityIX (Violent)[2]
Peak acceleration1.51 g[3][4]
Tsunami3.5 m (11 ft) tsunami waves in the Tasman Lake, following quake-triggered glacier calving from Tasman Glacier[5][6]
LandslidesSumner and Redcliffs
Casualties185 deaths[7][8]
1,500–2,000 injuries, 164 serious[9]

Christchurch's central city and eastern suburbs were badly affected, with damage to buildings and infrastructure already weakened by the magnitude 7.1 Canterbury earthquake of 4 September 2010 and its aftershocks. Significant liquefaction affected the eastern suburbs, producing around 400,000 tonnes of silt. The earthquake was felt across the South Island and parts of the lower and central North Island. While the initial quake only lasted for approximately 10 seconds, the damage was severe because of the location and shallowness of the earthquake's focus in relation to Christchurch as well as previous quake damage. Subsequent population loss saw the Christchurch main urban area fall behind the Wellington equivalent, to decrease from second- to third-most populous area in New Zealand.


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