I’ve experienced a lot of earthquakes in my eleven years in Wellington, but nothing as scary as last night’s quake which lasted for over a minute and shook people out of bed all in the Capital and all over the country.
*latest quake and aftershock updates are available on Geonet.
As I write this at Wellington airport, the ground regularly rolls beneath me as waves of aftershocks continue. Ironically, I am on my way to two conferences in Christchurch and Dunedin to talk about crisis communications, including a Q&A with The Press reporter Paul Gorman (now cancelled) about what we leaned from the Christchurch quakes.
This quake appears to have claimed two lives. So I’m thankful everyone in my apartment building is fine and the damage in the photos below is superficial.
But the quake really brought home to me how helpless and vulnerable you feel in a quake, cowering there in your underwear as your belongs crash down and you expect the four floors of residents above you to come crashing down on your head.
Then there’s the drunken unsteadiness as the aftershocks come – accentuated on the fifth floor.
I hope Sciblogs readers are okay and if your place ended up like mine (see below), it is a decent reminder to all of us that we live in the shaky isles and we need to bolt things down that are likely to fall down!
Credit to the team at RNZ and seismologists at GNS and John Townend at Victoria University for the science-related commentary throughout the night.