On Saturday morning, the 4th of September 2010 at 4.35am an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.1 on the Richter scale rocked Christchurch and caused severe damage to buildings and infrastructure. The authorities estimate the costs could be as high as NZ$ 2 Billion. When seeing the destruction in the centre of the city, it seems like a miracle that no one has been killed and very few people seriously injured.

New Zealand is on the boundary between the Australian Plate and the Pacific Plate. As a result of the Pacific Plate moving west-southwest at about 50mm a year, earthquakes are a regular occurrence and people are used to feel the odd quake; about 250 earthquakes every year are big enough to be felt. But this one was definitely different and bigger than most.

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