SA embassy in NZ ’providing updates on quake’

South Africans trying to contact their family and friends in Christchurch, New Zealand, were urged to...

TV frame shows a car destroyed by damage caused by a 6.3 earthquake which hit the city of Christchurch on February 22, 2011. Picture: AFP

South Africans trying to contact their family and friends in Christchurch, New Zealand, were urged to contact the government on Tuesday after a 6.3 magnitude earthquake rocked the country.

At least 65 people were killed and more than 200 are missing from the quake.

There has been very little telephone contact in Christchurch as networks were either down or overloaded.

International Relations Department spokesperson Clayson Monyela said they were receiving regular updates from officials at the embassy in Wellington.

“We can advise South Africans who maybe have family or relatives [there] to keep regular contact with our department for information as the day progresses,” he said. “We do get regular updates and we’ll make that information available…”

Benoni resident Leanne Turner, who has two sons living in the city, said she was immensely relieved that she managed to get hold of them on Tuesday morning.

“Just knowing that they’re safe, you know I don’t want to know every detail at the time, because I realise that everybody is in an emergency situation,” she added.