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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

New Zealand : #CHCH Quake Update 4

From The Ministry of Civil Defence, this site gets updated regulary :

" #CHCH Quake Update 4

A magnitude 6.3 earthquake has occurred 10km south-east of Christchurch at 12:51, February 22, 2011. Depth (focal depth): 5km.

This has been followed by a number of aftershocks, the largest a magnitude 5.7 which was 6km deep and centred 10km east of Canterbury. There are areas of liquefaction in the central city, as well as telecommunications and power outages and reports of water in the streets.

Damage assessment (1620hrs):

The Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management (MCDEM) is assessing information with the assistance of scientific advisors and Civil Defence Emergency Management (CDEM) Groups.

The National Crisis Management Centre has been activated.
  • To minimise loading on the telecommunications network, people should use txt messaging to check if friends and family are safe
  • There are reports of fatalities and injuries and widespread building collapse (especially in the central city).
  • The earthquake was felt widely across the South Island.
  • Christchurch City declared a state of emergency at 1445 hrs.
  • National agencies have been activated and are being coordinated via the National Crisis Management Centre.
  • There are Fire Service and Police reports of serious injuries and fatalities.
  • The National Crisis Management Centre is anticipating a need for temporary accommodation due to the extensive building damage.

Urban Search and Rescue

Task Force 2 (Christchurch) is understood to be inoperable. However, Task Force 1 (Palmerston North) and Task Force 3 (Auckland) are being mobilised. USAR support from Australia is being mobilised, while support from the United States in on standby.

Hospitals and Medical Centres

Christchurch hospital is operational (contrary to some media reports) and one ward has been evacuated. The hospital has 40+ casualties (as at 1415 hours) but they expect this to rise. The District Health Boards are communicating to coordinate support requirements.

Wellington Hospital is on stand-by to receive patients if required.

Airport status

Christchurch International Airport is open for emergency flights only. The runway is being assessed. Other South Island airports are open. Air New Zealand will not be flying until at least 1900 hours today.

Port status

Damage reported but extent unconfirmed.

Lifeline utilities

Electricity: The Transpower main transmission grid reports no major issues. Orion is reporting significant local distribution network outages.

Telecomms: Vodafone and Telecom are advising customers to limit their calls or to use text only.

Water: There are reports of broken water pipes and associated flooding.

Waste water (sewerage): There are reports of broken water pipes and associated flooding."

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