A 6.2 magnitude earthquake has struck New Zealand’s South Island this morning.
According to GeoNet, the quake hit at 9.14am (local time) and was centred 45km north of the town of Geraldine in the Canterbury region.
The epicentre is about 120km west of Christchurch and the event marks the strongest earthquake to hit New Zealand this year.
The quake was just 11km deep, GeoNet says, and was felt across both the South and North Islands.
Despite its size, the National Emergency Management Agency has confirmed there is no tsunami risk.
The organisation received over 14,000 reports.
New Zealanders described the quake as “long” and “rumbling”, and an aftershock registering a magnitude 3.4 was recorded about 10 minutes after the initial shock.
The magnitude is similar to that of which rocked Christchurch in 2011, killing 185 people – though the 2011 quake was much shallower at just five kilometres.
It’s unclear at this stage what damage, if any, has been dealt to the area, though residents have already begun sharing their experiences online.
Dairy farmer Craig Hickman posted to X, “That was not light shaking.”
Another said their “whole house shook” and “cupboard doors swung open.”
Dan Hall, a farmer from Mount Somers near the epicentre, said he was driving and thought his car was falling apart when the quake hit.
“I actually thought my tyre was coming off. I pulled over and [the earthquake] was still going,” he told Stuff.
“I haven’t felt one like that for a long time.”