Sharp series of aftershocks strike New Zealand

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
September 7, 2010 05:36

 
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CHRISTCHURCH, New Zealand – A sharp series of about 20 aftershocks rattled New Zealand's earthquake-hit city of Christchurch overnight, and earthquake experts warned Tuesday that another powerful tremblor might hammer the region in coming days.

The weekend's powerful 7.1-magnitude earthquake smashed buildings and homes, wrecked roads and disrupted the central city, though nobody was killed and only two people were seriously injured.

The city center remained cordoned off by troops Tuesday, with only building owners and workers allowed in to begin clearing up the mess — with much of the center taking on the mantle of a ghost town.

More than 100 aftershocks, ranging from magnitude 3.2 to 5.4, have rocked the region since Saturday's major quake.

Overnight, about 20 shocks including two of magnitude 5.4 rattled the city, and quake experts said aftershocks likely will continue for several weeks — and the worst of them may be yet to come.

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