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Browse the 1966 Encyclopaedia of New Zealand
Graphic: An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand 1966.


This information was published in 1966 in An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand, edited by A. H. McLintock. It has not been corrected and will not be updated.

Up-to-date information can be found elsewhere in Te Ara.



Felt Intensity

An earthquake makes itself felt with different intensities in different places. One might expect the felt intensity to be highest at the epicentre and to diminish uniformly with increasing distance. Actual intensity patterns are rather more complicated, however, because of the influence of geological structure and type of ground. Scales of intensity have been designed as a measure of the effects produced on people and objects at any locality where the earthquake is noticed without the aid of instruments. The following scale, which is used in New Zealand, was formulated in California in 1931: