New Zealand Quake Ruptured 6 Faults

A new map reveals that six faults ruptured during the Nov. 14 Kaikoura earthquake in New Zealand. The magnitude-7.8 quake ruptured at least four faults along the coast, as well as two inland. Arrows show the level of displacement along each of these faults.
Credit: GNS Science

The magnitude-7.8 quake that rattled New Zealand, killing at least two people and stranding thousands of people, completely transformed the underlying faults in the region.

Six major faults ruptured as a result of the New Zealand quake, a new map reveals.

The Kaikoura earthquake struck the South Island of New Zealand early in the morning on Nov. 14 local time, triggering landslides, tsunamis and hundreds of aftershocks. And thousands of people were stranded when earthquake detritus dammed a river. During the quake, bystanders captured images of mysterious earthquake lights painting the sky in eerie blue and green.

The Great Wall of New Zealand

University of Canterbury scientists have encountered incredible new features created after the magnitude 7.8 quake.

Geologist Dr Kate Pedley​ took the above photos of the huge land-change in Waiau, the small town closest to the quake's epicenter.

"Maybe not as flashy as the ruptures north of Kaikoura," she said. But the ruptures she photographed near Waiau were a complicated and fascinating occurrence, Pedley​ said.

Pedley​ and her colleagues had been exploring a three kilometre-wide zone, where a large number of ruptures and land changes had occurred.

Although some parts of the area got off seemingly unscathed, Pedley said it "very quickly got messy for infrastructure to the northeast".

A team of geologists from the university travelled from the western end of the Amuri Range, back across the Emu Plain and continued as far as the cordons would allow them.

They got as far as Mt Lyford Village, where only military convoys were allowed to carry on further.