8.56am:

Emergency authorities say they will continue to monitor the threat of a tsunami to the Bay area.

The official tsunami warning was lifted this morning following a major quake earlier today.

Bay of Plenty Civil Defence Group Controller Clinton Naude said: "We will continue to monitor the situation throughout the morning as the unsettled seas may still cause changes to currents, tides and wave patterns."

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Mr Naude reminded people on coastal areas to:

• Stay out of the water (sea, rivers and estuaries, including boating activities)
• Stay off beaches and shore areas
• Do not go sightseeing
• Share this information with family, neighbours and friends
• Listen to the radio and/or TV for updates
• Follow instructions of local civil defence authorities

''We have also been advised that residents on the Rangitaiki Plains water scheme are advised to boil water until further notice. This is a precautionary advisory due to high amounts of sediment in the aquifers,' he said.

''Te Teko residents are asked to conserve water due to dropping reservoir levels. Waimana's water supply and Edgecumbe's wastewater are back to normal. For more information about this update please contact Whakatāne District Council.''

8.31am: The tsunami threat that warned Bay of Plenty residents to steer clear of the coast after a major earthquake this morning has been cancelled.

The Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management (MCDEM) has cancelled the tsunami marine and beach threat warning in place for the North Coast Regions of the North Island of New Zealand.

Based on all available data, the greatest tsunami activity has now passed. However, coasts may still experience unusual, strong currents and sea level fluctuations lasting for several more hours.

8.01am: Civil Defence officials have issued a tsunami warning following a 7.1 quake that shook North Island this morning, but people are ignoring or not aware of the threat at Mount Maunganui.

A reporter at Mount Maunganui beach this morning said people did not seem to know of the warning.

''People are walking up and down the beach like they normally do. It's very calm here. There's no waves at all,'' he said.

Earlier: Civil Defence officials have issued a tsunami warning following a 7.1 quake that shook North Island this morning.

The quake hit at 4.37am, around 100km northeast of the East Cape settlement of Te Araroa, at a depth of 55km.

Shortly after 6am a potential tsunami threat was upgraded to a warning by Civil Defence.

Those living in coastal areas should be aware tsunami currents and surges were possible.

The warning covers the East coast of the North Island, including Auckland, Waikato and Bay of Plenty and the upper South Island.

People in the above/ coastal areas should:

1.

Stay out of the water (sea, rivers and estuaries, including boating activities)

2.

Stay off beaches and shore areas

3.

Do not go sightseeing

4.

Share this information with family, neighbours and friends

5.

Check news websites, listen to the radio and/or TV for updates

6.

Follow instructions of local civil defence authorities