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July 6, 2011

New Zealand declares a tsunami warning after an earthquake of 7.8 magnitude on the Richter scale

New Zealand authorities have reduced the risk of a tsunami warning given on Tuesday after an earthquake of 7.8 magnitude on the Richter scale struck the Kermadec island, about 800 miles west of New Zealand.

David Coetzee, spokesman for the Civil Protection Service, told Radio New Zealand that the wave caused by the earthquake will be about five feet when it comes to the New Zealand coastline, making it unlikely to cause damage on land.

The spokesman said that the greatest risk once you get to New Zealand will be for boats from the docks of the West Coast, whose crews recommended security measures. "There will be only one wave is over," he said.

The quake was 48 kilometers deep and about 12 miles from Raoul Island, the Kermadec. The Pacific Warning Center, meanwhile, extended the tsunami warning for Tonga and Kermadec islands.

In New Zealand, the Civil Protection Service has asked people to stay away from the coast until we know the exact extent of the threat, although initially estimated that the tsunami will reach the coast will be small.

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