Hikurangi Margin

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The Hikurangi Margin is an active subduction zone extending off the east coast of New Zealand's North Island, where the Pacific and Australian plates collide.[1] It is the southern portion of the Tonga–Kermadec–Hikurangi subduction zone and its main feature is the Hikurangi Trench.

Earthquakes of up to 8.2M have been recorded on the Hikurangi Margin, generating local tsunamis, and earthquakes in the 9.0M range are thought to be possible.[2] The Ruatoria debris avalanche originated on the north part of the subduction zone and probably occurred around 170,000 years ago.[3]


  1. ^ "Hikurangi Margin". The University of Waikato.
  2. ^ Wallace, Laura M.; Cochran, Ursula A. (June 2014). "Earthquake and Tsunami Potential of the Hikurangi Subduction Thrust, New Zealand: Insights from Paleoseismology, GPS, and Tsunami Modeling". Oceanography. 27 (2). doi:10.5670/oceanog.2014.46.
  3. ^ Collot, John-Yves (September 10, 2001). "The giant Ruatoria debris avalanche on the northern Hikurangi margin, New Zealand: Result of oblique seamount subduction". Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth. 106 (B9): 19, 271–19, 297.