Earthquakes in Christchurch 2011, New Zealand

Earthquakes in New Zealand

In New Zealand, there are very strong earthquakes with far-reaching consequences. Earthquakes with a magnitude of over 8.0 destroy numerous houses within a radius of several hundred kilometers and are causing great damage and devastation. Due to the special tectonic situation of the country, there are more earthquakes than average.

Since 1950, more than 190 people have been killed by the direct consequences of earthquakes. There were 29 earthquakes that also caused a subsequent tsunami, which claimed further lives, and cause additional damage.

Other natural hazards in New Zealand:
The most severe earthquakes in the world

Back to overview: New Zealand

Severe earthquake on May 31st

On the afternoon of May 31st, 2023, a devastating earthquake occurred Auckland Islands at 14:21 local time. The quake had a magnitude of 6.3 points on the Richter scale and occurred at a depth of about 10 kilometers. Such violent earthquakes occur only rarely. It is the strongest earthquake in New Zealand in 37 days. As recently as April 24th, a magnitude 7.1 earthquake occurred about Kermadec Islands.

Most recent events

This list includes the strongest earthquakes recorded in or around New Zealand by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in the past 14 days. Whether an event is listed here depends largely on its magnitude, but also on its distance from inhabited areas. All data refer to the local time. This page is updated daily at 10:00 UTC.

Recent earthquakes in New Zealand
  • May 31, 2:21 pm
    Magnitude 6.3: Auckland Islands at a depth of 9.8 km.

Earthquakes in New Zealand since 1950

Earthquakes in Christchurch 2011, New ZealandThe strongest earthquake in New Zealand happened on 10/20/1986 in the Raoul region with a magnitude of 8.1 on the Richter scale. The earthquake also triggered a tsunami, leading to further victims and destruction.
DateRegionDepthMagnitudeDeathsTotal damage
04/24/2023South Of43 km7.10
03/16/2023Kermadec Islands22 km7.00
11/30/2022Taupo7 km5.40
01/29/2022Kermadec Islands10 km6.50
03/04/2021Sse Of Raoul Island19 km8.10
03/04/2021Gisborne20 km7.30
03/04/2021South Of, Raoul55 km7.40
06/18/2020South Of, Raoul10 km7.40
06/15/2019South Of, Raoul34 km7.20
11/13/2016Amberley34 km7.82
09/01/2016Gisborne3 km7.00
06/23/2014Sse Of Raoul Island34 km6.90
01/20/2014Wellington, Manawatu-Wanganui35 km6.10
08/16/2013Wellington, Marlborough47 km6.50
07/21/2013Cook Strait31 km6.50
12/23/2011South Island (Christchurch)38 km5.80
12/03/2011Cook Strait10 km5.30
10/21/2011Kermadec Islands16 km7.40
07/06/2011Kermadec Islands18 km7.60
06/13/2011South Island (Canterbury)49 km6.01
02/21/2011Christchurch, Lyttelton42 km6.1181
12/25/2010Christchurch15 km4.50
09/07/2010South Island (Canterbury)57 km5.00
09/06/2010North Island (Porangahau)33 km5.10
09/06/2010South Island (Christchurch)1 km5.00
09/03/2010Christchurch47 km7.00
07/15/2009Off West Coast Of South Island29 km7.80
08/25/2008North Island19 km5.50
12/20/2007Off Coast North Island15 km6.61
12/09/2007Kermadec Islands20 km7.80
10/15/2007South Island (Fiordland)36 km6.80
09/30/2007Auckland Islands34 km7.40
01/20/2005North Island30 km5.30
11/22/2004Invercargill, Southland, Otago23 km7.10
07/18/2004North Island (Rotorua, Tauranga)22 km5.41
09/29/2003Christchurch32 km4.80
08/21/2003Dunedin, invercargill, te Anau, fiordland49 km7.20
02/05/1995North Island; S Island (Christchurch)5 km7.10
06/18/1994South Island (Christchurch)15 km6.80
06/18/1993Kermadec Islands54 km6.60
09/08/1991Wellington, Wanganui30 km5.60
05/13/1990Dannevirke, Wellington9 km6.30
03/02/1987North Island, Whakatani, Edgecumbe34 km6.61
10/20/1986Raoul9 km8.10
05/25/1981West Of North Island14 km7.60
10/05/1980Gisborne, Hawera, Eastbourne, Napier49 km5.60
10/12/1979West Of North Island22 km7.50
02/09/1978South Of12 km7.70
01/14/1976Kermadec Islands33 km8.00
01/14/1976Kermadec Islands34 km7.80
02/21/1973Hawkes Bay23 km5.10
09/28/1970New Zealand 5.10
07/25/1968South Of, Raoul7 km7.30
05/23/1968South Island (Nw Coast) 7.13
03/07/1961Kermadec Islands 7.50
09/14/1959Kermadec Islands 7.70
03/02/1956North Island 5.30
02/27/1955Kermadec Islands 7.80
03/14/1950N. New Zealand41 km5.80

These statistics are based on datas from the National Geophysical Data Center / World Data Service (NGDC/WDS): Significant Earthquake Database. doi:10.7289/V5TD9V7K. Data have been summarized and translated.
International tourismThe 40 most popular travel countriesA ranking of international tourism over 40 countries. USA ranks 3rd.
United States of America: VolcanoesActive volcanoes and eruptions in the United StatesVolcanic eruptions and their damages by 17 volcanoes of United States of America
Austria: ClimateClimate and temperature development in AustriaA climate analysis for Austria incl. temperatures, humidity, rain days per month, hours of sunshine, water temperature, rainfalls