Just posted by Radio New Zealand News: Bay of Plenty hit by 7.1 earthquake. It's early Friday morning there.
People in coastal areas near East Cape have been advised by the local civil defence to evacuate after a severe earthquake.
The 7.1 earthquake hit about 4.40am about 130km north-east of Te Araroa at 55km deep.
Civil Defence was advising anyone living near the coast needs to evacuate the area, take their radio with them and immediately go to higher ground.
Civil Defence public information officer Sheridan Gundry says the emergency management centre has been activated.
He said it was best to walk or ride bicycles, rather than jam the roads up with cars.
The quake followed a smaller one which hit the area yesterday.