|New Zealand Quake – AP|
The earthquake that devastated a city in New Zealand tore open a new 11ft faultine in the Earth’s surface.
The 7.1-magnitude quake which hit Christchurch, the country’s second-largest city, destroyed about 500 buildings and caused an estimated £930million of damage.
But hundreds of lives were saved by tough building rules, it was claimed. Only two injuries were reported.
The quake was caused by the continuing collision between the Pacific and Australian tectonic plates, said Professor Mark Quigley, of Canterbury University.
‘One side of the Earth has lurched to the right … up to 11ft and in some places been thrust up,’ he said. ‘We went and saw two houses that were completely snapped in half by the earthquake.’
The quake cut power across the region, roads were blocked by debris and gas and water supplies were disrupted.