'I thought I was going to die': Ceiling collapsed during earthquake

By Ophelia Buckleton

A Wellington resident is "terrified" after her bedroom ceiling collapsed on her and her boyfriend during this morning's earthquake.

Aria Counsell, 20, and boyfriend, Max Watson, were asleep in their seventh-floor apartment on Manners St in Wellington CBD when they felt the room start to shake at 12.02am.

Watson pulled Counsell onto the floor beside the bed and lay on top of her, covering her head, as her bookshelf, lamp and clothes rack fell.

Last night's quake caused heavy panels to fall from the ceiling and land on top of the couple in their Wellington apartment. Photo / supplied.
Last night's quake caused heavy panels to fall from the ceiling and land on top of the couple in their Wellington apartment. Photo / supplied.

"Then we felt a huge weight on top of us ... the ceiling had fallen on us.

"I thought I was going to die, it felt like the building was going to collapse," Counsell said.
Four or five heavy panels lay on top of the pair and injured Counsell.

"My legs are covered in bruises and I don't know what would have happened if we stayed in bed."

Counsell has bruises on both her legs after the incident. Photo / supplied
Counsell has bruises on both her legs after the incident. Photo / supplied

When the shaking stopped, the couple and their four flatmates ran down the stairs onto the street.

"We were in the street for about two hours."

Counsell said they stayed with friends in Karori last night before heading back to the apartment to gather some clothes this afternoon.

Counsell and residents from the other apartments have attempted to contact the property manager today, with no luck.

"I'm not sure what to do ... It's not really safe."

- NZ Herald

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