A massive 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck Southern California on the Fourth of July, leading to damage reports throughout some counties. The center of the quake was near Searles Valley in San Bernardino County.
Photos and videos showed items tumbled off store shelves and ripples in swimming pool water.
You can watch livestream news reports of the California earthquake here:
Here’s more livestream video:
The degree of damage is not yet clear, although there were reports of five fires in Ridgecrest, CA, in Kern County (per the mayor to CNN), and other damage throughout that county and San Bernardino. The mayor experienced an aftershock while speaking to the CNN news anchor.
According to the USGS Earthquake Hazards Program of the U.S. Geological Survey, the quake had these attributes: “M 6.4 – 12km SW of Searles Valley, CA. 2019-07-04 17:33:48 (UTC) 35.705°N 117.508°W8.7 km depth.” San Bernardino County Fire tweeted that there were no injuries, writing that it was “conducting assessment of region after #EARTHQUAKE. No injuries reported, however buildings and roads have sustained varying degrees of damage.”
“This would be our 7th or 8th one. Oh, my goodness, there’s another one right now. As I understand, we have five fires. We have broken gas lines…the police are out doing a marvelous job,” said Ridgecrest Mayor Peggy Breeden to CNN; she said she was experiencing another after shock as she spoke to the Cable News Network. She asked people to check on their neighbors in the community close to the epicenter. She said police, fire and volunteer organizations were out assessing the situation. She said that the five fires were under control and the cause was not clear.
Videos circulated showing damage.
“We’re asking people to not panic,” she said, adding that Ridgecrest is a city of about 28,000 people. She said there were numerous ambulances going by. She said she wasn’t sure why exactly.
The San Bernardino County Fire Department continued, “Mult buildings with minor cracks; broken water mains; power lines down; rock slides on certain roads. No injuries/fires. Addl engine companies and #USAR HeavyRescue 305 moving to the area.” The LA County Sheriff’s Department wrote, “Now that it looks like we are done shaking & rolling PLEASE call your family, friends, and check on any elder or disabled persons you know. 6.6 magnitude #earthquake out of #ridgecrest CA REPORTED AT 10:02AM.” (The quake was initially reported as a 6.6 magnitude and then downgraded to 6.4.)
The Kern County Fire Department wrote on Twitter of damage “#EarthquakeResponse @kerncountyfire resources working nearly 2 dozens incidents ranging from medical assistance to structure fires in and around the city of Ridgecrest, CA. @kerncountyfire Urban Search and Rescue teams en route.” The FD then added: “We can confirm evacuations are underway @ Ridgecrest Regional Hospital.”
The above map is from the USGS. It has the epicenter of the earthquake marked.
According to the City of Los Angeles, “The #ShakeAlertLA app only sends alerts if shaking is 5.0+ in LA County. Epicenter was 6.4 in Kern County, @USGS confirms LA’s shaking was below 4.5. We hear you and will lower the alert threshold with @USGS_ShakeAlert.” LAPD headquarters wrote, “At this time, the LAPD has not received any reports of damage or calls for service within the City of Los Angeles related to the #earthquake. Remember, 911 is only to report emergencies. This was a strong one, and a good reminder to be prepared.”
The Southern California Seismic Network offers this map:
According to the Los Angeles Times, “today’s earthquake was the largest in Southern California since the 1994 6.6 Northridge quake.” However, that one was located in a populated area, and thus it killed dozens of people, the newspaper noted. This one wasn’t in metro LA.