June 2015 – NEW ZEALAND – The 4.7–magnitude earthquake that rocked parts of Otago last night was believed to be the strongest experienced in the region since 1974. It struck at 11.17pm at a depth of 7km, centered 2km northeast of Lee Stream, some 30km west of Dunedin. The quake was felt in various parts of Otago, but there were no immediate reports of injury or damage. Adrian Bardrick, publican at the Clarks Junction Hotel, on State Highway 87, only about 12km from the epicenter, said they received a pretty good “sort of thump.” It rattled the bottles, he said. “But there was no damage.” The hotel was cleaning up after a good evening.
The largest quake significantly affecting Dunedin in the past several decades was on April 9, 1974. It was magnitude 5 and dislodged grocery stock and damaged some chimneys. The quake on October 16 last year was magnitude 4.1 at a depth of 4km and in almost the same place as last night’s shake. Police early this morning received several calls but no reports of damage. Otago Daily Times columnist Dave Cannan said: “It seemed to go on for some time – and I started to wonder if it was going to stop. Fairly scary, I have to say.” The ODT Facebook page attracted plenty of comments. “My sister lives up near Lee Stream and she said it sounded like a huge explosion! Scary enough here in Mosgiel,” Jenny Hooper posted. Another Mosgiel resident, Megan Direen, wrote: “Short sharp violent shaking. Sounded like a freight train smashing through the house.” Emilee Bartlett, also in Mosgiel, said it was “very loud and violent!” Another Wakari resident, Lisa Gurr, posted: “I’m in Wakari, too, and that was horrible.” In Opoho, Sally Knox said: “Our whole house was rumbling and shaking. Husband slept through it, but I am wide awake now like a nervous chihuahua.” –NZ Herald