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Quake hits New Zealand

 
 
canadian girl
 
  2  
Reply Mon 21 Feb, 2011 11:48 pm
@Butrflynet,
thank you so much for your help... i just heard from them. i got a text saying they were safe and sound. my heart goes out to all the families struggling right now in NZ and around the world. thank you for your replies.
KiwiChic
 
  1  
Reply Mon 21 Feb, 2011 11:49 pm
@ossobuco,
Yes its happened so quick, I feel for the poor souls who are stuck in a park overnight with no blankets, and a piece of hardboard to keep them off the ground....just unreal.
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 12:00 am
@canadian girl,
Take a look at this Google Map showing the location of Westport and Christchurch. I think it will give you a bit of relief to see how far apart they are.
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 12:02 am
@canadian girl,
Oh good! I'm glad they weren't out sightseeing on the other side of the island.
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  2  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 12:04 am
Christchurch appears to have had quite a bit of water main damage. They're going to have a bit of difficulty putting out the fires in all those burning buildings without good water pressure.
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 12:05 am
http://www.3news.co.nz/Christchurcjh-quake---Govt-press-conference/tabid/423/articleID/199340/Default.aspx

Quote:
Deputy Prime Minister Bill English says the Government will be accepting international help to deal with the aftermath of today’s Christchurch earthquake.

Prime Minister John Key has left for Christchurch after chairing an emergency cabnet meeting in the Bunker in Parliament.

“Ministers are ensuring that their departments are doing all that they can … they will meet again in a couple of hours time to discuss the next steps,” Mr English told media after the emergency meeting.

He says Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard has spoken to Mr Key.

Mr Key has taken Ms Gillard’s offer of support and Australian Search and Rescue personal are on their way to Christchurch.
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 12:36 am
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10708043

Quote:
Prime Minister John Key has told reporters that the death toll from today's magnitude 6.3 earthquake stands at 65, and Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker said it could quite possibly double.

Speaking from Christchurch after flying down this afternoon, Mr Key told One News it was likely the quake would prove to be New Zealand's "darkest day".

TVNZ reports up to 200 people remained trapped in damaged buildings.

Mr Key said New Zealanders should be assured the Government was doing everything it could.

There were 180 police on the ground, a further 200 were on the way and 350 military were already in Christchurch with another 250 to arrive soon.

The Government had accepted offers of specialist help from Australia and US.

"I don't think we can go past the fact that we may well be witnessing New Zealand's darkest day."

"It's an absolute tragedy for this city, for New Zealand, for the people we care so much about and it's a terrifying time for the people of Canterbury.

"Quite frankly it's hard to know what to say.

"It's just a scene of utter devestation, it's just so vastly different from the last earthquake where, yes, there were some horrifying scenes but this is central city at a very, very busy time where you've had a massive earthquake.

"It's been violent shaking on probably what was very weakened infrastructure."

Christchurch mayor Bob Parker says: "As daylight comes tomorrow we need to prepare ourselves for what is likely to be significant numbers of casulaties."


Quote:
Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker says he holds grave concerns for the safety of people in Banks Peninsula area following today's massive earthquake and aftershocks.

Christchurch is located immediately north of the peninsula.

"We still have yet to hear any reports in from Banks Peninsula and I'm very very concerned about that," he told Radio New Zealand.

"The centre of the earthquake was in Lyttelton Harbour. There are hills covered in rocks, those rocks would have come down."
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 04:29 pm
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2011/02/quake-experts-surprised-by-level-of-destruction-in-new-zealand-see-parallels-california-dangers.html

New Zealand earthquake surprises experts with its level of destruction; California parallels seen

February 22, 2011 | 1:52 pm

http://www.latimes.com/media/photo/2011-02/59609967.jpg

When the New Zealand earthquake struck Tuesday, Jason Ingham was preparing for a seminar on earthquake building standards in a Christchurch hotel, which began to shake.

He and his colleagues from the University of Auckland had studied damaged structures after the last Christchurch quake, which struck in September of last year. But he said they could feel immediately that Tuesday’s quake was more intense.

Ingham and the others quickly evacuated their hotel. Across Cashel Street, they saw people climbing out of the top floors of a separate hotel, which leaned to one side.

Throughout the city center, there was chaos. From the initial devastation alone, Ingham said he knew there would be serious injuries. As his group left the city, they saw many victims who were bloodied and bandaged.

“There was a mass exit of people in every direction,” Ingham said. “The first mode was just to survive.”

His group safely evacuated to a motel about a mile outside the city center. Based on initial observations and reports, Ingham said he believed this quake was very different from the previous one he studied. Although it had a lower magnitude, it occurred closer to the city, and ground acceleration was much higher. And though most of the damage last time occurred to unreinforced-masonry buildings, many modern buildings were damaged Tuesday, Ingham said.

“Our instinct is that this exceeded the loads that even the modern buildings were designed for. We are almost certain,” said Ingham, who is an associate professor of civil engineering. “The assumption is that an earthquake of this size would have caused damage in any modern city anywhere.”

He and the other researchers planned to travel back into Christchurch Tuesday morning. He said there was a chance they would be turned away due to the ongoing search-and-rescue efforts within the city.

Whereas after the last quake he researched unreinforced-masonry buildings almost exclusively, he said this time the biggest question would be how newer buildings fared. In the last 30 or so years, New Zealand engineers have followed the same guidelines used in other quake-vulnerable regions such as California and Japan, Ingham said.

“The thing that will attract a very large amount of attention from people all over the world is the performance of the modern buildings that have been designed to current standards that still received damage,” Ingham said. “At least in the city center, almost every building suffered some sort of damage.”

Ingham noted in previous research that, compared with other cities and towns in New Zealand, Christchurch had taken a more passive approach to updating its building codes. He said Tuesday that about half of all the buildings in Christchurch were unreinforced masonry.

Many of the older buildings were completely destroyed Tuesday, he said. He believes a greater portion of the modern buildings will be recoverable.

“With some modern buildings ... there will be cosmetic damage," he said, "but the structural integrity is still OK.”

Thomas Jordan, director of the Southern California Earthquake Center at USC, said Tuesday’s quake also provided a reminder that the most destructive quake can be an aftershock to the main quake. Aftershocks since the September main quake, which was centered in rural farmland, have been moving eastward in recent months, closer to Christchurch.

“Earthquakes don’t happen individually, but in sequences. We have to be prepared that when we get large earthquakes in California that we recognize that that means the seismic hazard has gone up, not down. One earthquake does not mean the end of story,” Jordan said.

In California, the southern San Andreas fault, which is ripe for a large earthquake, could buckle in a series of quakes, Jordan said.

Christchurch was devastated in large part because of the shallowness of the quake and the fact that the strongest shaking occurred precisely in the downtown area of one of New Zealand’s oldest cities. “It’s really the fact that you had a lot of buildings very close to the very strongest hypocenter," Jordan said, "which means the strongest shaking was right there in town."
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 04:32 pm
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 05:01 pm
An update on Lyttelton:

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10708141

Lyttelton was shaken to its core by the earthquake, with most of its heritage buildings in the city centre left in a heap of rubble - however, it was believed last night there was no loss of life.

Rachel Lister, a Lyttelton resident, said she had never been so scared in her life.

"It's pretty scary. I consider myself a pretty staunch person but I was a blithering wreck in the doorway for a good 20 minutes afterwards; not able to move because there'd be another one."

Ms Lister, a 28-year-old intern doctor, said when she felt the first quake she ran to the front doorway, but the frame had buckled.

"I couldn't get it open so I had to get to the next door, but I tripped over on the way because it was such a big shake. It was hard to walk. It was hard to get around and it felt like it went on forever."

It took Ms Lister more than 40 minutes to compose herself before she could go outside.

"I then ran outside to check on our elderly nextdoor neighbour to see if she was okay."

As she went through the town, she saw five or six buildings in the centre of town that had been completely flattened.

"Thankfully there hadn't been any fatalities, there was just one chap who'd been scalded when his hot water pipe exploded. But apart from him, everyone's doing pretty well, under the circumstances."

Ms Lister said her house was full of broken objects, and was without power.

"There's china all over the floor, the microwave's fallen off the wall, all the paintings are off the wall, light fixtures have fallen down and the veranda's walked about a metre away from the house."

Jared Adam, a 23-year-old student from Lyttelton, said from what he had seen about half of the buildings there had been badly damaged.

"Most of the larger concrete buildings have all fallen down ... a lot of the places got fully ripped apart. My place doesn't really look that good but I don't really want to sleep in the rain, so you've just got to deal with it."

He said people had started to camp on a grassy area above the local school, and the emergency accommodation at the Lyttelton Recreation Centre was extremely full.

Lyttelton Port is partially functioning, but it will take at least 24 hours for staff to assess the extent of earthquake damage to wharves and other infrastructure .

Lyttelton Tunnel was closed after rock falls, but it reopened to emergency vehicles about 6.30pm.

It will remain closed to normal traffic until a safety assessment is carried out today.
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 05:04 pm
Wow...

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10708071

Quake shakes 30m tonnes of ice off glacier

The magnitude 6.3 earthquake that devastated Christchurch was strong enough to shake 30 million tonnes of ice loose from Tasman Glacier at Aoraki Mt Cook National Park.

Passengers of two explorer boats were hit with waves of up to 3.5 metres as the ice crashed into Terminal Lake under the Tasman Glacier at the mountain.

Aoraki Mount Cook Alpine Village tourism manager Denis Callesen said huge icebergs formed in the lake, which were then rocked by massive waves for 30 minutes.

The danger to passengers could have been worse if not for safety procedures put in place when it was suspected the area was becoming unstable, he said.
0 Replies
 
Ceili
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 06:32 pm
My cousin is there and we've not been able to get a hold of him. Last I heard he was in Christchurch. I'm very worried, the devestation is horrible. I'm not a praying person, but I really that the aftershocks are not too bad and that all the victims are saved and soon.
NZ know that people here in Canada are pulling for you. I've never felt an earthquake but I can imagine the fear...
KiwiChic
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 08:27 pm
@Ceili,
This is the number for International people who have missing people here in NZ for anyone out there 64 7 850 2199. The toll today is 75 confirmed dead, 20 have not been identified and there are many more still under tonnes of rubble, just dreadful stuff.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 08:29 pm
@KiwiChic,
Some of that rubble seems to defy pulling apart..
KiwiChic
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 08:46 pm
@ossobuco,
I know, some pieces are just huge solid lumps of concrete.
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Feb, 2011 08:51 pm
@KiwiChic,
Those 20 are probably the 20 students from China that were studying at the foreign languages school. They were missing and feared under the collapsed building. Haven't heard of any of them being rescued yet. If it is them, it may take awhile for them to be identified.
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Wed 23 Feb, 2011 12:51 pm
@Ceili,
Ceili, check out Google's Person Finder site and leave info about your cousin there. They now have one dedicated to the quake.

http://christchurch-2011.person-finder.appspot.com/


Google Person Finder is a handy tool that lets you search a user-created database of people using a missing person's name. If you don't find a match for the person you're searching for, you can leave information about her or him, as well as a message. You can also leave information about yourself for your loved ones, or add some information about another person.
0 Replies
 
Ceili
 
  4  
Reply Wed 23 Feb, 2011 02:23 pm
Got the news from Ireland, he's ok. Thanks for your concern. I glad he's well, but I really feel for all the victims. It's heartbreaking...
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Wed 23 Feb, 2011 05:29 pm
@Butrflynet,
It's sure weird. That one building in the pic, so destroyed and the one across the street [from this angle] looks completely normal.
Butrflynet
 
  2  
Reply Wed 23 Feb, 2011 05:44 pm
@JTT,
You'll see a lot more like that in the aerial view from the helicopter in an earlier post. Some buildings are totally demolished and next door another one will be untouched or will have one side of it collapsed while the rest of the building is untouched.

There were similar instances in Oakland after the Loma Prieta quake. It was explained that it had to do with the side to side motion of the quake rather than the typical up and down motions.

In the office building I was in at the time it was quite evident. Lateral filing cabinets that were facing in one direction all had their drawers roll out of the cabinets and fell over while filing cabinets oriented in the other direction were untouched. We had a storage room built from the typical partition walls found in offices. The corners of the walls in that same direction of movement were separated at one side of the room by a couple of inches, enough that glass fell out.

When driving home from work that night and avoiding the freeways and dodging fallen bricks and signal outages in streets, I noticed that on one side of the streets, the brick facades of older buildings were mostly in piles on the ground, while buildings in the cross streets, facing a different direction, had no signs of damage.
0 Replies
 
 

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