A strong earthquake struck Tuesday in the ocean south of New Zealand's main islands, but there were no reports of serious damage or injuries and there was no threat of a tsunami.

The magnitude 6.6 quake struck 458 kilometers (285 miles) south of the town of Bluff and near the uninhabited Auckland Islands, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. Hundreds of people in the cities of Invercargill and Dunedin reported feeling a light shaking.

The quake was shallow, with a depth of only 10 kilometers (6 miles).

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center and New Zealand civil defense officials said a tsunami was not expected. Emergency authorities did not report any significant damage or injuries.

New Zealand sits on the "Ring of Fire," an arc of seismic faults around the Pacific Ocean where earthquakes are common. An earthquake in the New Zealand city of Christchurch in 2011 killed 185 people and destroyed thousands of homes and buildings.