7.4M quake hits near Kermadec Islands

Location of a large earthquake near the Kermadec Islands. (USGS)

The US Geological Survey is reporting a magnitude 7.4 earthquake has struck near the Kermadec Islands.

It's reported the quake hit about 6.40am, at a depth of about 56km.

The Kermadec Islands Nature Reserve and Marine Reserve, located about 1000 km northeast of New Zealand, is the most remote area managed by DOC and can only be visited with a special permit.

SunLive will provide updates as they come in.

This is the second large earthquake to hit off New Zealand this morning.

At about 2.30am, a 7.2 magntitude quake woke many people in the North Island.

Those who felt the earthquake described it as "long and strong".

The earthquake struck 100km to the east of Te Araroa and triggered a tsunami warning by the NEMA.

The warning was cancelled around 6am.

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