Powerful magnitude 7.3 quake hits near New Zealand; tsunami warning issued

U.S. & World

(USGS)

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Officials in New Zealand issued a tsunami warning for coastal areas after a shallow, powerful earthquake struck off the northeastern coast on Thursday night. There were no immediate reports of serious damage or casualties.

New Zealand’s National Emergency Management Agency warned of a tsunami threat along the east of the country’s North Island from the quake, which it measured at magnitude 7.3. The U.S. Tsunami Warning System predicted waves of 1 to 3.3 feet.

The U.S. Geological Survey also said the quake measured magnitude 7.3. It said it was centered at a depth of six miles under the ocean about 111 miles northeast of the city of Gisborne. Residents of Gisborne reported light to moderate shaking, it said.

A magnitude 6.3 quake hit the city of Christchurch in 2011, killing 185 people and destroying much of its downtown.

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