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More earthquakes rock Christchurch in New Zealand

Reuters/Tim Kelleher

A series of powerful earthquakes rocked the city of Christchurch in New Zealand's on Monday, only four months after a major quake killed 181 people in the country's second biggest city.


More buildings collapsed in the central business district which was heavily hit by the deadly 6.3 earthquake in February.

The National Crisis Management Centre controller, David Coetzee, said there were no reported fatalities from the latest tremors but at least 10 people had been injured.

Power company Orion said electricity had been cut to 54,000 homes and
council staff said they had lost water pressure across the city.

The US Geological Survey measured the largest quake at a magnitude of 6.0, with a depth of nine kilometres and the epicentre some 14 kilometres from the heart of the city.

It hit at 2:20pm local time (0220 GMT) just as schools were about to end for the day.

All schools have now been closed until further notice.

"It will be a restless night," Christchurch mayor Bob Parker warned. "It's pretty realistic to
expect overnight we will have some more aftershocks."

The series of quakes came just hours after the opening of an inquest examining why an office block collapsed in February's earthquake, killing more than 100 people.



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