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See our New Zealand Earthquakes page for ongoing updates - infonews.co.nz
Police has responded swiftly to the 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch this afternoon. The Police Distinct Commander, Superintendent Dave Cliff, who was in Wellington at the time, has now returned to the city to take personal command of the rescue effort. Commissioner Broad is currently on his way to Canterbury courtesy of an Air Force flight from Auckland.
A team has been assembled at Police National Headquarters to ensure that the full resources of the organisation are available for the Christchurch emergency. It is likely that Police from other Districts will be called upon to assist. Deputy Commissioner Pope is the principal liaison with the whole of Government operation in the Beehive being led by the Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management.
Reports have been received of some difficulties being experienced with callers trying to reach emergency services through 111; Police wish to advise that the service is working. However, it may take some time to get through due to network damage, congestion and overloaded lines. We ask everyone to be patient and if the first call does not go through, to hang up and call again.