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Tsunami warning issued after massive earthquake strikes New Zealand

NewsBy Sunday World
A tsunami warning on a motorway near Wellington, New Zealand
A tsunami warning on a motorway near Wellington, New Zealand
The epicentre of the quake was close to Christchurch
The epicentre of the quake was close to Christchurch

The New Zealand Ministry of Civil Defence has issued a tsunami warning in the wake of a massive earthquake in the country earlier today.

The latest warning suggests that waves up to five metres high are possible.

The earthquake was centred near Christchurch, and a 6.3 quake there in February 2011 killed 185 people and caused widespread damage.

Initially New Zealand Civil Defence just tweeted that it is "assessing [the] situation with assistance of scientific advisors and civil defence groups".

In Wellington, 132 miles north of the quake's epicentre, power was knocked out in some places and some windows smashed and some chimneys collapsed.

There were no immediate reports of any major damage or injuries in Christchurch.

The quake was centred 57 miles north-east of Christchurch, according to the US Geological Survey.

It was at a relatively shallow depth of six miles. Earthquakes tend to be more strongly felt on the surface when they are shallow.

Monday's quake was much farther away from any major population centres.

New Zealand sits on the "Ring of Fire", an arc of seismic faults around the Pacific Ocean where earthquakes are common.