26 Nov 2008

6.0 earthquake strikes Kermadec islands

7:59 am on 26 November 2008

A 6.0 magnitude earthquake struck the remote Kermadec islands north of New Zealand on Tuesday afternoon.

The US Geological Survey reports that the epicentre of the quake was 131 kilometres from Raoul Island and at a depth of 35 kilometres.

There was no immediate alert from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre.

Earthquakes and volcanic activity are common in the area, which is part of the Ring of Fire where the Pacific plate of the earth's crust meets other continental plates.

In the past two months, tremors of 7.3, 6.5 and 6.0 have been recorded in the area, 1,000 kilometres north of New Zealand.

The Kermadec islands are uninhabited apart from Raoul, where New Zealand's Department of Conservation maintains a field station.