Former SLV student discusses New Zealand quake

On November 14th, a 7.8 earthquake struck right after midnight across New Zealand. The earthquake triggered a tsunami and sent over 60 aftershocks across the country with magnitudes of 4.5 or greater. Two people were found dead and thousands were stranded in the town of Kaikoura near the quake’s epicenter. There was somewhere between 80,000 to 100,000 landslides and some of the country is now dealing with heavy rain.screen-shot-2016-12-13-at-1-23-25-pm

The earthquake caused waves 2.49 meters (8 feet) above usual tide levels. A tsunami warning was lifted, but temblors continued into Monday afternoon. A 6.2-magnitude earthquake struck around 1:30 p.m. 39 kilometers west-southwest of Kaikoura. The town was blocked off for a while and was recently reopened for a bit and allowed for military trucks to get in and out of the town.

Former SLVHS student, April Martin-Hansen was in Taranaki, New Zealand at the time of the earthquake. Taranaki is on the north island of the island nation. When asked what it was like during the earthquake, she said that since she was quite far from the epicenter of the earthquake, she was protected from the dangerous after effects. However, everyone around her was woken up and pretty freaked by it. When she got out of bed to go check on her friends who were staying the night, she felt as if she was walking on the deck of a ship in slightly rough seas.

Martin-Hansen first felt as if she was dreaming that someone was shaking her bed and then soon realized this it was really an earthquake- and a big one. The first thing that went through her head was the fact that she lived right next to a giant volcano that was way overdue to explode. She was worried that the earthquake might cause volcanic activity and endanger her life.

After the earthquake had passed, Martin-Hansen checked in with her neighbors who have young kids to make sure they were okay. She then went online to research the quake. Her advice for those who ever find themselves experiencing an earthquake is to stay calm and find something sturdy to hide under. “There isn’t much more you can do other than that; either you’re going to be fine or you’re not. Nature isn’t really something you can control.”

By Camryn Hipwell

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