Port of Wellington (NZ) Closed After Earthquake

The Port of Wellington has been closed for a number of days following a destructive earthquake which rocked the South Island of New Zealand. The earthquake, measuring a magnitude of 7.5, struck the upper South Island of New Zealand at midnight local time on 14 November. It caused infrastructural damage across the country; the damage didn’t stop at the initial shockwave, aftershocks and extreme weather have followed, making recovery a slow process.

Only the ports of Wellington and Picton have currently issued damage notifications, with an advisory note released by Wellington authorities stating that both the port and wharf gates will remain closed for the next seven days. No ship or cargo operations will be permitted. As and when certain sections are cleared by engineers selective operations may be allowed to recommence during this period.

The New Zealand Herald reported that cargo and logs had been strewn across the port, and there are damages to terminals; shipping workers were forced the flee Kings Wharf after a massive crack in the ground began forming across the port. Power has been restored to all major cities. Rail lines in Upper South island and lines in the Wellington region are closed with buckling of lines and earth slips. These are heavy in the upper south island and some major rail lines could be closed for weeks. Roads in coastal areas and highways linking Christchurch to Picton are closed (along with the rail line on this route).