Tsunami warnings issued after 7.8-magnitude quake off New Zealand coast

July 15, 2009 13:54

The US Geological Survey issued a tsunami warning on Wednesday, after a 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck off New Zealand's western coast. The quake's epicenter was 161 kilometers west of Invercargill, off the west coast of New Zealand's South Island, at a depth of 33 kilometers. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said that "an earthquake of this size has the potential to generate a destructive tsunami that can strike coastlines in the region near the epicenter within minutes to hours." The southeast coast of Australia was also on tsunami alert. The quake was felt widely across South Island, where the earthquake was centered.

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