Central New Zealand rattled by magnitude 5.0 quake felt by more than 8000 people

A magnitude 5.0 earthquake centred 25km south-east of Nelson has been felt by thousands of people in central New Zealand

According to the GeoNet website more than 8400 people felt the "light" shake.

The quake struck at 9.30pm at a depth of 98km according to GeoNet.

It was felt widely at the top of the South Island and the bottom of the North Island - as far north as Taupo and as far south as Dunedin.

Nelson City Council has called the earthquake "a nice little shake there as we all settle down for the evening!"

There are no reports of damage so far in Nelson.

The council is reminding residents to be prepared and refresh their emergency plans with information from Nelson Tasman Civil Defence's website.

More than 8000 people have reported feeling the jolt, which was centred south-east of Nelson. Source: 1 NEWS