It won’t be news to any of you that yet another sequence of earthquakes hit Christchurch yesterday – a 5.8 at 1.58pm and a 6.0 at 3.18pm. While many are still rattled from yesterday’s events, and there are some areas that are only now having power and water restored, I think we can say we’re all thankful that there has been no loss of life and very few reports of serious injuries.
I was in the office at the time of the 5.8 and somewhat ironically was talking to a solicitor-friend of mine about the implications of one of my listings being zoned TC3 (for those of you who are unfamiliar with Christchurch’s land zonings, TC3 is land where homeowners have been given the go-ahead to rebuild and repair, but may be required to have a site-specific geotechnical investigation and meet more stringent foundational requirements).
More than anything else, this latest swathe of aftershocks seems to have wrought more psychological damage than physical. After a reasonably lengthy lull in aftershocks, many of us were getting back to a degree of normalcy and were looking forward to 2012 with a fresh optimism after what has been a pretty stressful and unpleasant year. For many it seems that there is no end in sight for these unwelcome shakes.
However, it is heartening to see that things have seemingly returned to business as usual – Westfield Riccarton this morning was still bustling with last-minute Christmas shoppers, and the coffee shops and restaurants were brimming with patrons enjoying their lattes, sauvignons and paninis. Yet another toast to Cantabrian resilience!