WELLINGTON, Jan. 1 (Xinhua) -- Two earthquakes hit the Taranaki region, in the western part of New Zealand's North Island, in the early hours of New Year's Day, causing little damage.
The first was a magnitude 5.0, which hit at 3.11 a.m. local time Tuesday, at a depth of five km.
New Zealand governmental geological agency GNS Science reported that it occurred 30 km north-west of Opunake.
The second struck half an hour later, with a 4.3-magnitude shake hitting at 3.42 a.m.
The second quake was centred 25 km north-west of Opunake at a depth of six km.
Local residents were woken by the shakes, which lasted about 20 seconds.
There have been a number of smaller aftershocks throughout the morning in the area.