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Powerful earthquake in New Zealand triggers tsunami

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A 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck New Zealand’s South Island, generating a tsunami, forcing evacuations from many low-lying areas on the eastern shore.
Early reports said two people were killed.
More than 100 aftershocks hit the country since the earthquake struck around midnight Sunday.
The US Geological Survey said the quake struck at a depth of 14 miles, with an epicenter 57 miles northeast of Christchurch.
The Civil Defense and Emergency Management Ministry said a tsunami wave had arrived in areas near Kaikoura and Wellington on the country’s northeastern coast. The ministry also said in a Twitter post that “coastal areas between Blenheim and Banks Peninsula, and Chatham islands, are still prone to tsunami. Please remain on high ground.” Residents in those areas were urged not to return home.
More waves were expected.
The impact of the powerful quake could be felt all across New Zealand, with people reporting shaking from Dunedin in the south and Auckland in the north.
The New Zealand GeoNet Project, which monitors geological hazards in the country, said that people in the worst-hit areas were “experiencing difficulty standing,” that furniture and appliances were shifting and that the quake may have caused damage to weak buildings.
Reports of serious damage to houses and buildings were reported in local and social media. Trees were down, bridges destroyed and highways split open, and in some areas electricity had been cut off, officials said.
In the capital Wellington, thousands of residents left their homes for safer areas. Sirens could be heard and people were seen crying on the streets, local media said.
All service on the Wellington train network was suspended for an inspection.

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Powerful earthquake in New Zealand triggers tsunami