Does New Zealand have earthquakes
Earthquakes happen every day in New Zealand. Approximately 14-15,000 occur in and around the country each year. Most of them are too small to be noticed, about 200 are large enough to be felt.
Most of these earthquakes are too small to be noticed, but between 150 and 200 are large enough to be felt. The country is situated in the collision zone between the Indo-Australian and Pacific tectonic plates, resulting in frequent seismic activity. The main ranges running from Fiordland in the southwest to East Cape in the northeast are where most events occur, following the boundary between the two tectonic plates. Wellington is one of the most active seismic regions, followed by Napier and Hastings, while Auckland is one of the least active. Large earthquakes are less common in regions where the plates are not subducting, and the forces are accommodated in different ways. New Zealand has experienced at least 20 earthquakes with magnitudes larger than 7.0 since about 1850, and the country has stringent building regulations due to the earthquake risk. The 2011 M9.0 Tohoku, Japan, earthquake prompted a reassessment of seismic risk in New Zealand, particularly in subduction zones that have not experienced megathrust earthquakes. The country has many types of faults and earthquake sources, including subduction zone earthquakes, shallow strike-slip and thrust earthquakes, and normal faulting earthquakes and volcanism in the back arc in the North Island and northeast offshore. The largest city within the highest-risk zone is Wellington, followed by Napier and Hastings, all of which have experienced severe earthquakes since European settlement.
In summary, New Zealand is categorized as having a high risk of earthquakes, with the most active seismic regions being Wellington, Napier, and Hastings. These areas are prone to frequent and potentially large earthquakes due to the country's location in the collision zone between the Indo-Australian and Pacific tectonic plates. Auckland, on the other hand, is one of the least active seismic regions in the country. The seismic activity is primarily concentrated along the main ranges running from Fiordland in the southwest to East Cape in the northeast, following the boundary between the two tectonic plates.