A strong earthquake has hit the southern half of the North Island on Saturday morning with items reported falling off shelves.

The magnitude 5.8 earthquake went on for at least 30 seconds and was located 25 km south-east of Tokoroa at a depth of 196km.

The quake struck at 7.19am.

GNS Science said it was a "decent subduction zone quake" which means it was deep and felt widely, though it is often not felt where it happened.


GeoNet said it was the strongest in a swarm of 24 tremors in the North Island over a seven-hour period.

Caz Milligan wrote on Twitter there was significant shaking in Pohangina Valley.

"No damage, however items fell off shelves," she wrote.

In Hawke's Bay the quake rattled houses and it was felt as far away as Wellington.

Sandra wrote on Twitter: "TV wobbled. House creaked. Photos on dresser shook. Cat was not perturbed and wanted breakfast. So much for animal senses."

Sara Knox tweeted that the quake shook her awake in Wellington.

"Hope Mt Tongariro didn't feel it and get ideas ..."

Jerome Gilchrist tweeted that the earthquake was "scary".


"I live in Titahi bay that's ages away from each other and it was a 5.8 ugh it woke me up."

- Hawkes Bay Today with APNZ