Sunday, November 20, 2016

Earthquakes and storms

It has been quite a week. Most of wellington and the upper South Island of New Zealand were woken abruptly at 12:02 am on Monday morning by a big (7.8 M) earthquake (or it turns out it was probably a couple of quakes) which lasted for over a minute. Fortunately freya slept through it. Aaron was standing in her doorway ready to grab her if needed. We were very lucky....just a few spices fell off the spice rack. But others were not quite so lucky.....

The biggest luck was the fact that it happened in the middle of the night as most of the damage seems to have been to office buildings in town and landslides completely blocking highways. Down south the main highway is closed due to lots of landslides and the road and railway lines are broken up in places, and several bridges are damaged. There could have been a lot more fatalities and injuries if it had been during the day. 

After the main quake there was a tsunami (although it wasn't very big). Lots of people from down on the flats evacuated to higher ground. Luckily we are high enough we just went back to bed. There have been lots and lots of aftershocks, some pretty large. It has made for a shaky week. 

To make things worse however, the main quake on Monday morning was followed by a large storm, which then resulted in more slips and flooding. Wellington was pretty much shut down for several days as no one could get in or out of town and buildings were being checked. Something's returned to normal by Tuesday...but others took a couple of days, and still others will probably take months - like the highways down south. 

For wellington it was a lucky escape as none of the quakes were under us.....but it certainly has increased everyone's awareness....time to update the emergency kit. 




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