Severe aftershocks continue to rock parts of New Zealand still rattled and recovering from Monday's destructive 7.8magnitude earthquake centred in North Canterbury.
AS IT HAPPENED:
8.15pm - The HMNZS Canterbury has left for Lyttelton carrying about 450 people and four dogs. A total of 600 residents and tourists were evacuated by sea and air throughout the day.
The NZ Bankers Association says New Zealand banks are acutely aware of the strain placed on residents in the areas affected by the quakes. They said banks are offering financial assistance to those who need it, and anyone adversely affected and in need should call their bank to discuss options. Contact phone numbers for the banks are:
ANZ 0800 269 296
ASB 0800 803 804
BNZ 0800 275 269
Heartland Bank 0800 227 227
Kiwibank 0800 222 497
Rabobank 0800 500 933
TSB Bank 0800 872 226
Westpac 0800 400 600
BNZ says it is working on restoring its ATM network in Kaikoura. They are aiming to have their ATM operating by tomorrow, but said network issues could prevent this. Their Hanmer Springs, Harbour Quays, Kilbirnie, Lower Hutt and North End stores are currently closed pending engineer inspections.
A 24-hour helpline is available for anyone who needs support, the Ministry of Health says. The number is 0800 777 846.
5.29pm: The 7.5 quake that struck early on November 14 has been upgraded to a 7.8 magnitude, acting Civil Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee says. The new magnitude matches the deadly Hawke's Bay earthquake of 1931.
"The revised magnitude just tells us what anyone who felt the earthquake would already know – that it was a powerful tremor that lasted for a long time," said Mr Brownlee.
GeoNet says there have been 307 earthquakes in the past 12 hours, with 18 of those over magnitude 4. Since Monday's magnitude 7.5, there have now been 1823 earthquakes.
The Wellington Region Emergency Management Office is urging people to stay out of cordoned areas in Wellington's CBD. There are cordons in place in Molesworth Street, as well as other areas, and the Office warns that the cordons are there for a good reason - often because glass or other loose materials could fall and injure people. Council building inspectors are still performing checks of buildings.
The New Zealand Defence Force will airdrop 5000 litres of water in to Kaikoura this afternoon. Four NH90 helicopters have already delivered 1300 litres of water, 300kg of food and jerrycans of diesel to Kaikoura yesterday. THE NZDF says it has mobilised about 500 personnel, at least 11 aircraft and four vessels to support the earthquake response.
Vodafone has donated $150,000 to the Red Cross appeal to benefit residents and visitors of the Marlborough and upper Canterbury region. You can make an instant $3 donation by texting RED CROSS to 3181.
People are being ferried to NZDF vessels anchored off the coast of Kaikoura. The HMNZS Canterbury and HMNZS Wellington are both nearby, with the HMAS Darwin, HMCS Vancouver, HMNZS Endeavour and HMNZS Te Kaha on their way. The USS Sampson is also on its way.
Donations are flooding in from across New Zealand to help the people of Kaikoura. Among those collecting for Kaikoura is Lilly Tiffen, who posted on Facebook asking for aid and within hours had received thousands of parcels of food, water, pet food, sanitary products and personal care packages.
A building in central Wellington at risk of collapse is likely to be deconstructed. Wellington Mayor Justin Lester has confirmed engineers have spent the day working on a plan for the eight-storey Molesworth Street building, and the advice is it should come down. He says there is no public safety risk from debris falling from the building, but internally there are issues that need to be addressed. A cordon has been in place since yesterday, after the building was deemed to be structurally damaged, and that could be reduced as new information comes in. The Council will confirm a timeline when and what will happen with the building later this afternoon.
Spark says land line and broadband may be restored in Kaikoura later today or early tomorrow. Mobile service was restored at 10am this morning and Spark says it has teams of technicians working at several sites to restore total service in the area.
Wellington Mayor Justin Lester says it will take time before the full extent of the earthquake damage in Wellington is known. "The Council's core services - drinking, waste and storm water, rubbish and recycling collection, roads, pools and recreation centres - continue to run," he said. "We need to remember that Wellington is an earthquake prone location, and for the most part the city has the resilience to cope. However we know that a number of our buildings and roads have been adversely affected. Our focus now must remain on addressing the worst affected areas."
NZTA says that very limited access has now been restored on SH70 - the inland route into Kaikoura. However, only military-grade 4WD vehicles are able to negotiate it. This will allow the delivery of water and essential supplies. The road is not yet open to private vehicles.
Prime Minister John Key says emergency legislation similar to that enacted following the Christchurch Earthquake may be need to help Kaikoura cope in the wake of Monday's earthquake. A business recovery package is to be announced by the Economic Development Minister tomorrow. The legislation could be used for things like sea dredging and removing large amounts of rubble blocking roads in the Kaikoura area.
KiwiRail has confirmed it is working with Lyttleton Port on whether or not it is an option for a ferry port. It hopes to have fully assessed the possibility by the end of the week.
It's believed that a landslide from Monday's earthquake has destroyed a well-known seal nursery north of Kaikoura. Ohau Point is a popular tourist spot, and Nic Toki of the Department of Conservation says it has been completely buried, and that it is likely some seals were killed if they were on the rocks at the time.
Marlborough Council building inspectors are aiming to identify all house in the Ward township which are safe to return to by the end of today. Coastal properties were inspected yesterday to the south and east of Ward almost as far as Clarence and some way up the Kekerengu Valley. Door-to-door assessments are continuing today in Ward. So far, 14 properties have been yellow stickered and four have been red stickered, with 21 properties given a white sticker so the owners are able to return.In Seddon, five properties have been yellow stickered and three white stickered. For insurance and EQC purposes, property owners are advised to photograph all damage.
Police are asking anyone travelling along State Highway 1 south of Seddon in Marlborough to carry photographic ID with them. They are checking that travelers have a legitimate reason to be in the area as the emergency effort continues, and the highway south of Seddon remains closed. Crews are working to have the road between Seddon and Ward open by tonight.
Canterbury Civil Defence controller John Mackie says supplies, food and fuel are on the way to Kaikoura by sea, and there are 700 tourist evacuations planned today. Water supply points will be established by the end of today, but a boil notice remains in place. The sewerage system in the area has suffered severe damage, and sewage is being pumped out and trucked to treatment ponds. Portaloos will be brought into town by the HMNZS Canterbury on its return trip from Lyttleton. Surveyors are inspecting buildings, starting with commercial and then moving on to residential. Access via the inland route to Kaikoura is still being worked on, and it is hoped it will be open by the weekend, but structural assessment of bridges along the route have not yet been completed.
More Wellington buildings have been closed due to structural concerns following the earthquake. An apartment building on Tennyson Street is the latest to be evacuated, and the New Zealand Defence Force headquarters on Aitken Street has also been closed. Simpl House, which houses Pharmac's Wellington office, briefly opened this morning but has since been closed again. The closures follow the cordoning of an office building on Molesworth Street yesterday evening due to fears it could collapse.
The New Zealand Navy says every country in Auckland for 75th birthday celebrations has offered to send their resources to Kaikoura.
They say the first priority was sending ships with helicopters. But vessels with amphibious capability, like those from Indonesia and Singapore may be sent in a second wave.
A US warship and an Australian warship are en route to Kaikoura.
John Key has said today in Kaikoura that can see momentum between his first and second visits.
He says the priority remains getting people out, getting inland route open for weekend and a long term SH1 fix.
Steven Joyce will announce an earthquake support package tomorrow.
The Government is very keen to get tourists back but not until the infrastructure is ready. Once done, the Government will promote Kaikoura’s readiness.
In a lighter take on the quake, 1 NEWS has filmed a large rock on a road near quake-ravaged Ward in Marlborough with the 'buggar' written on it, presumably describing feeling towards the quake.
Te Papa is open from Wednesday 16th November, after recovering from the earthquake.
The museum is back to its normal opening ours of 10am – 6pm, seven days a week.
Prime Minister John Key has arrived in Kaikoura for his second visit since the Monday earthquakes telling Transport Minister Simon Bridges at points it seemed entire mountains had moved and it was hard to see how the road could be salvaged.
Mr Key and Transport Minister Simon Bridges travelled down on a RNZAF NH-90.
It was Mr Bridges' first look at the slips and damage to the coastal State Highway One and the rail line.
Bridges' verdict when he saw the first major slip was "pretty messy".
Mr Key said "that's not the biggest one by any stretch of the imagination".
Further down Mr Key pointed out massive slips which had totally obliterated the road.
"Look at this road here, this is really stuffed and there's thousands of metres of it. I just don't see how you can ever repair that bit of road. The whole mountain has moved over."
Vodafone say six breaks in main cable that runs along SH1 in Kaikoura will now take some weeks to fix.
- Currently 50% of Kaikoura has access to the town's water supply and Civil Defence expect that number to increase to 75% by mid-morning.
- Boil water notices are in place in Hurunui and Seddon.
- The public water supply is intermittent in Ward.
- Sewerage is out. 1500 chemical toilets expected via HMNZS Canterbury.
- North Canterbuy/Hurunui District have boil water notices, plus Raglan in north Island.
- Picton residents asked to conserve water as reservoir there is leaking.
- Water, food and fuel are particularly needed in Mt Lyford, Hanmer , Culverdon, Waiau, Rotherham, Ward, Seddon, Blenheim and Kaikoura.
Spanish tourist Juan, who's stranded in Kaikoura spoke with 1 NEWS reporter Brodie Kane. He told her of his scary night on the beach when the 7.5 shake hit on Monday and talked about his Kaikoura experience. Watch the interview below:
Civil Defence Canterbury is asking people to NOT donate goods to Kaikoura at this stage. Donating money to the Red Cross and other relief appeals is the preferred way for you to show your support right now.
Update on rail and ferry services affected by the quakes
Kaitaki and Kaiarahi ferries are now carrying foot passengers out of Wellington to Picton however foot passengers are still unable to be checked in and carried between Picton and Wellington.
The Capital Connection will operate today however the service will be bus replaced between Palmerston North and Wellington for the morning service.
Scenic Journeys services the TranzAlpine and Northern Explorer will operate as normal today. The Coastal Pacific remains cancelled due to significant track damage on the Main North Line.
The rail-enabled Aratere ferry will remain berthed in Wellington today pending clearance of the Wellington rail span.
Civil Defence is hoping to evacuate 600 people out of Kaikoura today. Five hundred will leave on the HMNZS Canterbury and 100 more will be choppered out.
HMNZS Canterbury and HMNZS Wellington have arrived at Kaikoura. These ships are due to arrive later today: HMNZS Te kaha; HMNZS Endeavour; HMAS Darwin; HMCS Vancouver; USS Sampson.
The Prime Minister John Key, Minister Responsible for the Earthquake Commission Gerry Brownlee and Labour leader Andrew Little have flown over part of the Kaikoura region this morning to assess the quake damage.
The Prime Minister says the damage to the Kaikoura region is worse than he thought.
Massive slips could be seen as he flew over in a Defence Force NH90.
"It's just utter devastation, I just don't know...that's months of work," John Key told Gerry Brownlee and pilots.
Mr Key and Mr Brownlee estimated the clean up will run into the hundreds of millions of dollars and clearing the debris and blocked roads could take months.
The HMNZS Canterbury has been spotted off the coast of Kaikoura. The ship will evacuate 500 people stranded by the quake to Lyttelton.
South Island roads update
There's controlled access for local residents and emergency services for SH1 south from Seddon to Ward, and north from Cheviot to Goose Bay.
There's an alternative inland state highway route from Picton to Christchurch, via Murchison and the Lewis Pass.
State Highway 7A is open, giving access to Hanmer Springs from State Highway 7.
Tourism Industry Aotearoa chief executive Chris Roberts wants to ensure people still visit tourist town Kaikoura. Speaking on Breakfast today he said "we need to support it".
The HMNZS Wellington has been sighted off Kaikoura. The ship will survey the sea bed but other navy ships are on their way to ferry people out.
There are an estimated 700 tourists still stranded in Kaikoura according to 1 NEWS reporter Lisa Davies who's in the town.
She says: "The marae has been the hub of keeping people fed and watered, they can only do so much. They have been phenomenal."
Labour leader Andrew Little told TVNZ's Breakfast this morning he is supportive of the Government's plan to help out local businesses affected by the quake.
"If we lose those businesses, Kaikoura’s future could be very shaky," Mr Little said.
At least 100 people affected by the quake stayed at the Takahang Marae in Kaikoura overnight for a second night. The marae has served 6,500 meals.
The Red Cross will start going door-to-door in Kaikoura today to check on the welfare of locals. They have set up a Red Cross's quake appeal.
The rescue effort in Kaikoura is in full swing this morning.
HMNZS Wellington has just arrived off the coast with HMNZS Canterbury not far behind. Wellington will begin surveying the seabed today while Canterbury will be evacuating some of the hundreds still trapped in the town. Canterbury will provide 5000 kgs of desparately needed supplies and it's hoped the ship will transport 500 people to Lyttelton. Along with the two ships eight aircraft and hundreds of Defence Force personnel are helping with evacuations with nearly 200 people rescued so far.