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New Zealand Earthquake: September 4, 2010

A 7.0M earthquake that struck off New Zealand’s South Island early on Saturday, September 4, 2010 (12:35:46 PM EDT) has reportedly caused widespread damage to buildings and roads in the region. The epicenter was located approximately 50 km to the west-northwest of Christchurch, where roughly two-thirds of the 160,000 homes in and around the city were damaged, New Zealand's prime minister has said. The cost of repairs has been estimated at $1.44 billion.1 The earthquake occurred as a result of strike-slip faulting within the crust of the Pacific plate, near the eastern foothills of the Southern Alps at the western edge of the Canterbury Plains.2

MCEER investigators Michel Bruneau (Professor, Department Civil, Structural & Environmental Engineering, University at Buffalo) and Myrto Anagnostopoulou (Structural and Test Engineer, Structural Engineering and Earthquake Simulation Laboratory, University at Buffalo) conducted post-earthquake investigations in New Zealand on behalf of MCEER and the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute (EERI).

The EERI Canterbury Earthquake Reconnaissance Team included the following members: Mary Comerio, Professor and Former Chair of the Department of Architecture, UC Berkeley; Ian Aiken, Principal at Seismic Isolation Engineering Inc; Lucy Arendt, Associate Professor, Management, University of Wisconsin; Michel Bruneau, Professor of Engineering at State University of New York at Buffalo and MCEER; Peter Dusicka, Assistant Professor at Portland State University; William Holmes, Principal Structural Engineer at Rutherford & Chekene; Charles Roeder, Professor of Engineering at the University of Washington; and Fred Turner, Structural Engineer with the California Seismic Safety Commission. The EERI team in the field was also joined by teams from AIR Worldwide, Humboldt State University, MCEER and the U.S. Geological Survey.

New Zealand Earthquake Damage Reports

Additional Resources on the New Zealand Earthquake

Publications

Related MCEER Research