It says patients are being moved out of Kaikoura as needed • Yesterday morning's devastating 7.5 quake claimed the lives of at least two people - thousands of others miraculously escaped injury • A 100-year-old woman and her daughter-in-law were rescued from the rubble of an historic homestead, while her son tragically did not make it • Richie Mc Caw involved in rescue mission after deadly South Island quake: "it's a bit scary".
• Residents fled homes in the wake of a tsunami threat - police now investigating 19 cases in which vacant houses were ransacked by burglars • A massive slip has also closed SH70 to Waiau in north Canterbury • The cost of the quake is expected to be billions of dollars • Many schools from North Canterbury to Wellington remained shut yesterday while damage was assessed • Prime Minister John Key has cancelled his official visit to Argentina to deal with the quake fallout • Power is out in many areas • Some main highways remain closed • Follow us live all day through the blog above and listen to our live coverage on Newstalk ZB Read more:• What you need to know about quake and tsunami warning and should do• Evacuation centres• Tsunami hits east coast, Waiau feared worst hit• Wellington shaken awake • A 100-year-old woman and her daughter-in-law were rescued from the rubble of an historic homestead, while her son tragically did not make it.
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Shipping workers were forced to flee the Kings Wharf freight shipping terminal in Wellington, after cracks began appearing and water spurting from beneath them.
"It was just panic stations," said the man who did not wish to be named.
Key said it was important for people to keep following safety advice.
He said New Zealand was in "great shape" to meet any costs from the quakes, but expected there would be significant repairs needed. Acting Civil Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee said the pressing need was to get communications gear in to cut off areas and that would be the first task for the helicopters.
• For the latest coverage go to our new live blog here.
• Aftershocks have continued to rumble through the night.
Helicopters are currently being used to evacuate people from the coastal settlement, which still has no power.
EARLIER At least two people have died and several others have suffered non-fatal heart attacks and minor injuries following the 7.5 magnitude earthquake.
Emergency services have confirmed one death at the Elms Homestead in Kaikoura. One person was able to escape, one was rescued and third has died.
Relatives of the family are having trouble contacting emergency services due to congested phone lines and power cuts.
A spokeswoman said St John staff, resources and emergency equipment have been relocated to higher ground, and resource is being moved to affected areas in order to maintain response capability.