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California Rattled by 4.8 Magnitude Earthquake


A 4.8 magnitude earthquake rattled California’s Sierra Nevada on Tuesday afternoon. However, it did not cause serious damage or injuries, United States Geological Survey (USGS) reported. The quake struck after 3:04 pm and 9.6 km west of Big Pine, a small community in the eastern edge of Sierra Nevada.

According to the report it was one of the strongest earthquake people in the area had felt for some time.  The Indian Express noted that since 1935, the area has just witnessed 8 magnitude 3 quakes and in 1988, a magnitude 4 earthquake hit the area.

As stated by USGS, “an earthquake is the ground shaking caused by a sudden slip on a fault. Stresses in the earth’s outer layer push the sides of the fault together. Stress builds up and the rocks slips suddenly, releasing energy in waves that travel through the earth’s crust and cause the shaking that we feel during an earthquake.”

Susan Garcia of the US Geological Survey Earthquake Science Center in Menlo Park, said that the quake 14.4 km underground in Inyo County hit along the Owen Valley Fault Line.

As reported by Los Angeles Times, Avo Nersesian, a server at Country Kitchen in Big Pine said they felt the earthquake but it was not too major. He added, “After it started to shake we had some containers fall off of shelves.”

Rafael Abreu, a geophysicist with the USGS Earthquake Information Center in Colorado said, that still it was “high up there, even for California standards.” Abreu further stated, “In terms of depth, it’s close enough to the surface it’s going to generate aftershocks.”

Last year, the world  witnessed one of the most devastating earthquakes of all time in Nepal. The government of Nepal confirmed that 500,000 houses were destroyed and 8,700 people were killed. Recently, a major earthquake struck India-Myanmar border. Nine people lost their life and around 200 got injured in the catastrophe.

California is also no stranger to devastating quakes. Fort Tejon was struck by a 7.9 magnitude tremor in 1857, while North California was hit by a 6.9 magnitude earthquake in 1989. Sixty three people were killed in this quake. Nevertheless, the quake on Tuesday was not as  intense as to create massive destruction.

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