One of the largest earthquakes to hit California in decades shook the state’s northern coast to its core. At 10:18 p.m. PDT Sunday (3/9/14), an earthquake measuring 6.9 on the Richter magnitude scale hit roughly 48 miles off the coast of Eureka, CA in Humboldt County and about 4 miles beneath the Pacific seabed, according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). For comparison, the largest recorded earthquake in California was a Richter magnitude 7.9 that struck central and southern California on January 9, 1857.
Residents and police in Eureka said the shaking lasted between 20 and 30 seconds and luckily so far, there have been no reports of injuries or any major damage. “Everybody felt it region-wide to the point that there was concern for damage,” said Humboldt County Sheriff’s Lt. Steve Knight. “We had some alarms go off and other than that we dodged a bullet. We’re very grateful,” he said.
By late Monday morning it had already produced 20 aftershocks of magnitude-3.5 or larger, and more are expected over the coming days, said Keith Knudsen, deputy director of the USGS’s Earthquake Science Center. Knudsen also said there’s a 5 to 10% change of a larger quake in the area in the next week.
A tsunami was not expected for the U.S. west coast, according to the National Tsunami Warning Center which did not issue a tsunami watch, warning or advisory. WeatherBug is extremely grateful no lives were lost!
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The WeatherBug – Earth Networks Team