Christchurch Earthquake - Region 3 Information

The Following information has been received from Jim Linton VK3PC, Chairman IARU Region 3 Disaster Communications Committee.

"Hours ahead face rescuers following the devastating, shallow 6.3 on the Richter scale earthquake which struck the heavily populated business area of Greater Christchurch in New Zealand.

There are initial reports of 17 deaths in the second quake to hit since September last year. Under normal arrangements members of the AREC will find their services in use again. Reports are expected.

Communications and power has been cut in many areas, and water supplies disrupted.

The utter devastation has severely damaged many of the major buildings including the cathedral in central Christchurch.

Nearby towns have also been affected. While the 7.1 earthquake last September was more than 30km underground, the latest 6.3 quake was a mere five kilometres in depth. It has been followed by major aftershocks.