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Quake hits New Zealand; no casualties reported

WELLINGTON, New Zealand >> A powerful earthquake struck New Zealand’s North Island on Tuesday but there are no immediate reports of casualties or damage and no tsunami warning was issued.

The U.S. Geological Survey reported the earthquake had a magnitude of 5.3 and occurred at a depth of 100.2 miles. Another agency in New Zealand, GeoNet, measured the earthquake at magnitude-6.5.

The epicenter was about 45 miles southwest of Rotorua and shaking could be felt as far away as central Wellington. According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the earthquake hit at 3:36 p.m. New Zealand time.

No tsunami warning was issued by the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center.

Christchurch in New Zealand’s south was struck by a magnitude-7.1 earthquake in September and a devastating magnitude-6.3 quake in February that killed 181 people and crippled much of the city.

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