New Zealand PM carries on unfazed as earthquake interrupted press conference

She's known for her calm responses.

Kayla Wong | October 23, 2021, 11:12 AM

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is known for keeping her cool.

She demonstrated her calm composure once again at a press conference on Friday (Oct. 22), where she spoke about the country's new Covid-19 plans for lifting restrictions only after hitting a 90 per cent vaccination rate.

"Slight distraction"

As a reporter was asking her question, earthquake tremors were felt in the room.

Appearing to notice the shaking, Ardern straightened her back and tightened her grip on the podium for a moment, before turning to the reporter once again.

"Ah sorry, a slight distraction. Would you mind repeating that question?" she said with a smile.

After the conference was over, she told reporters that the earthquake was so mild that Deputy Prime Minister Grant Roberson wondered if it was simply strong wind, ABC News reported.

According to NZ Herald, an earthquake of 5.9 magnitude had hit the country's central North Island, in a small town called Taumarunui.

While tremors were felt by people across the country, and as far as Wellington, where Ardern held the press conference, some at the centre of the shake reportedly said they didn't feel a thing.

Known for keeping her cool

Ardern is known for her cool-headed response to several crises, such as the mass shootings in Christchurch in 2019.

Her popularity rose further after her successful handling of the Covid-19 pandemic, becoming New Zealand's most popular prime minister in a century.

She was also the world's youngest female leader after becoming New Zealand’s PM at 37 in 2017.

New Zealand sits on the seismically active "Ring of Fire", a 40,000km ring of volcanoes around the Pacific Ocean, making it prone to earthquakes.

Top image via Andrew Macfarlane/Twitter