An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 4.9 was felt across the eastern region of the South Island on Friday, but police said there were no immediate reports of damage or injury.
Police duty inspector Stewart Leighton said police staff reported feeling the temblor as it rattled the region shortly at 7:11 a.m. local time, but they had had no reports of effects from the quake.
The Institute of Geological and Nuclear Sciences said the quake was centered about 30 kilometers north of the southern city of Christchurch.
It occurred some 12 kilometers below the earth's surface.
Duty seismologist Warwick Smith said the area where the quake hit was part of a broad band of earthquake activity which occurs throughout the country.