A severe 5.9 magnitude earthquake rocked Christchurch, New Zealand, shortly after 11am on Sunday (NZDT).
The quake struck about 15kilometres east of the city at a depth of just 15kilometres, and was followed by a magnitude of 3.5 aftershock just four minutes later.
Photographs posted on social media pictures showed large dust clouds over the Christchurch suburb of Sumner, where a number of buildings and shops were evacuated.
The incident comes a week before the five year anniversary of the deadly 6.3 magnitude earthquake that hit Christchurch on February 22, 2011. 185 people died in the disaster and as many as 2000 people were injured.