Christchurch earthquake: Wind causes worry

Strong winds are expected to blow up thick dust clouds in earthquake-hit areas of Christchurch tomorrow afternoon.

Metservice has issued a severe weather warning forecasting winds of up to 90km/hr in the city from Tuesday until Wednesday afternoon.

Its weather ambassador Bob McDavitt said the winds will likely blow the silt and dirt produced by last week's earthquake across the city.

"This system is expected to begin affecting people in the Christchurch area late Tuesday, as winds become strong enough to make wind-blown dust a problem.

"There will also be some periods of light rain, but probably not enough to settle the wind-blown dust."

Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker this morning warned the dust clouds could affect some resident's respiratory systems.

Last week's quake had produced 180,000 tonnes of silt and dust - compared to 30,000 tonnes produced by the original 7.1 magnitude earthquake last September, he said.

The dust clouds should be able to be tracked at the Christchurch high resolution radar available at www.metservice.com.

- NZ Herald staff

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