Friday, April 26, 2013

Earthquake this morning, not too far away

The western and central Carolinas certainly aren't in an earthquake-prone area, but the ground shook early Friday morning in eastern Georgia, not far from the South Carolina border.

The U.S. Geological Survey said a quake with a 2.8 magnitude was reported shortly before 1:15 a.m. It was centered about 6 miles east-southeast of Lincolnton, Ga.

OK, so you don't know where Lincolnton, Ga., is.  How about 80 miles west of Columbia ... or about 140 miles southwest of Charlotte. Government officials say the quake did no damage but was felt at least 10 miles away.

The same area got a 2.5 earthquake on April 7, according to published reports at the time.

Government scientists as the U.S. Geological Survey say earthquakes happen occasionally in the inland Carolinas area, which also includes eastern Georgia. The strongest, in 1916, had a 5.1 magnitude, which was enough to cause damage.

There also was a 4.2-magnitude quake in eastern Georgia in August 1974.

According to the USGS, faults in the inland Carolinas are deeply buried and mostly undetected. So earthquakes normally are a surprise.

Actually, Charlotte's strongest shake probably came from an earthquake in the other direction -- at the coast. The great Charleston quake, on Aug. 31, 1886, is reported to have caused considerable damage in Charlotte. That quake had a 7.3 magnitude and killed between 60 and 100 people in the Charleston area.


Anonymous said...

Zzzzzzz. Yawn.