Auckland jolted by earthquake

22:15, Jul 03 2011

Aucklanders were shaken by a magnitude-2.9 earthquake at 9.09pm last night with an MP reporting it "felt like a gush of wind".

The earthquake was centred just off Mission Bay at a depth of 9km, and felt across Remuera, the North Shore and east Auckland.

There were no reports of damage.

GeoNet duty seismologist Lara Bland said Auckland was not a very seismically active area, so the quake was unusual.

In 2007, the region experienced a series of small quakes, and Bland said there was a possibility this could be the start of a similar pattern.

''There's small bouts of activity now and then,'' she said.


Bland also said it was ''very doubtful'' the activity in Christchurch caused last night's Auckland quake.

National list MP Dr Jackie Blue, who lives in Auckland's St Mary's Bay, said the earthquake "felt like a gush of wind had gone over the roof".

"There was a big jolt and Auckland doesn't get earthquakes, so this was scary,'' Dr Blue said.

''It's quite scary given what has happened in Christchurch and to think it could happen to Aucklanders is worrying and unnerving.''

Lois Eagles, who lives in Torbay Heights, felt the quake "quite strongly". 

She was in bed watching TV when the bed started to jolt and a chest of draws rattled. 

"It gave me a fright so got up and looked outside to see what my have caused such a jolt. I then knew that is was a quake as have felt a few before. 

"It was scary knowing Auckland is not a place normally to have quakes but did feel the one in 1991."

Auckland weather analyst Philip Duncan said the quake was ''tiny'' compared with the aftershocks in quake-stricken Christchurch.

The largest earthquake known to have affected the Auckland region was a magnitude-6.0 jolt centred near the mouth of the Waikato River on June 24, 1891.

It brought down a chimney in Auckland's Onehunga district, but otherwise caused only minor damage to fragile items and plasterwork.