November 15 2016
This has got to be one for the books! What a bizarre situation. Three cows made famous after they became stranded on a small island of grass following a powerful earthquake in New Zealand have been rescued. Their owner Derrick Millton tells how he and some helpers dug a track and encouraged them down.
Meanwhile, Devastation: aftershocks, landslides, and heavy rains continue in the afflicted area.
There have been two fatalities after a series of huge earthquakes overnight, Prime Minister John Key says.
Authorities are scrambling to assess damage and respond to reports of injuries after the first, 7.5 magnitude earthquake centred near Hanmer Springs.
The Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management confirmed there had been two deaths from the earthquake.
“On the best information we have, there have been two fatalities,” Mr Key told a media conference a early this morning. Earlier, police said one person had died in Kaikoura, where a house had collapsed in the earthquake.
Police said they were also trying to get to a property at Mt Lyford, north of Christchurch, where a second person is believed to have died. Mr Key said a Defence Force helicopter would be flying down to Kaikoura and another one would be available in Wellington. An Urban Search and Rescue team from Christchurch was also on its way to Kaikoura by helicopter to help following this morning’s quake.
Two further assessment teams had also been deployed – one to Waiau and one to Blenheim. Two New Zealand Fire Service command units will also provide potential coordination of assessment teams as needed. Nelson Marlborough District Health Board said five people had been admitted to Wairau Hospital by early this morning with various injuries, some described as moderate.
The first quake struck at 12.02am, at a depth of 15km.
It has been followed by a series of large earthquakes across New Zealand up to 6.2 in magnitude, which prompted tsunami alerts, causing residents of coastal areas to flee inland. Most were in the upper South Island, in Seddon and Kaikoura, but a 4.9 magnitude earthquake hit Paraparaumu and a 4.9 hit Wellington in the early hours. The Civil Defence ministry said roads were closed on State Highway 1 between Blenheim and Picton, State Highway 6 between between Blenheim and Nelson, and State Highway 7 between Springs Junction and Wairpara. It warned people to check for any dangers on damaged properties including to gas and water supplies.
The earthquake sequence is the biggest since the 5.7 Valentine’s Day earthquake, which caused cliffs in the Christchurch suburb of Sumner to fall and liquefaction in some east Christchurch areas.
From Guardian Wires
New Zealand cows’ owner tells of earthquake rescue
From The Top Story
New Zealand Earthquake – Damage, Update & Recap