Story: Historic earthquakes

Early morning quake

Early morning quake

Diane Jordon was in bed in her Christchurch home when the magnitude 7.1 earthquake struck in the early morning of Saturday 4 September 2010.

What\'s you story?

Contributed by Diane Jordan (nee Charteris)

4:30 a.m. awake in bed the earthquake struck. A violent jolt, deafening noise, like a train thundering round and round. The house moved in all directions including up and down. Could not get out of bed, when I did, the floor seemed to not be there, I fell, bruised the front of my body. Unable to stand. I crawled out to an external door. It was freezing, I put some clothes on over my pyjamas plus a coat. The noise, glass, banging, plus terrible rumbling noises. Cannot stand, quake now shaking, I stand, hold on so tightly to door frame for fear of falling over. Shaking mild, I get a mouthful of water. I am so scared. I need to defecate. I know aftershocks are coming, I go to the toilet and try to be real quick, then big quake again, I hold on real tight to sliding ranch doors. Noise is awfully loud. I ring emergency on mobile. No response for some time, then ... husband rings me back, I am so scared, I am crying, another strong quake comes. Scary. Goes on and on. Then another big quake hits. Three quakes are so strong, I go next door to check a neighbour and I notice the bird bath is solid ice.

Using this item

Private collection

This item has been provided for private study purposes (such as school projects, family and local history research) and any published reproduction (print or electronic) may infringe copyright law. It is the responsibility of the user of any material to obtain clearance from the copyright holder.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Eileen McSaveney, 'Historic earthquakes - The 2010 Canterbury (Darfield) earthquake', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 22 July 2024)

Story by Eileen McSaveney, published 12 Jun 2006, reviewed & revised 28 Mar 2011, updated 1 Nov 2017