(CTN News) – Early Tuesday, a powerful earthquake shook parts of Northern California, shaking residents awake, cutting off power for thousands, and damaging buildings and roads, officials said. There were two injuries reported.
There was an earthquake of magnitude 6.4 at 2:34 a.m. about 210 miles (345 kilometers) northwest of San Francisco in Ferndale. Just offshore, at a depth of about 10 miles (16 kilometers), was the epicenter. There were numerous aftershocks that followed.
Authorities later indicated that the damage was less than what might have been expected given the temblor’s magnitude, but the Humboldt County Office of Emergency Services tweeted that there were reports of “widespread damages to roads and homes.”
The Associated Press received an email from county sheriff’s information specialist Samantha Karges saying both people were expected to recover.
Brian Ferguson, a spokesperson for the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, said no fatalities were reported.
Two hospitals in the area lost power and were running on generators, but the scale of damage appeared to be “minimal” when compared to the magnitude of the earthquake, he said.
There was damage to an influential bridge in Ferndale, so authorities closed it. Crumpled pavement was shown in a photo tweeted by the state highway department.
The site poweroutage.us reports that more than 70,000 customers in the area lost power as a result of the gas leaks.
The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office tweeted that no tsunami was expected.
According to the California Earthquake Authority, the county of 136,000 residents is located in a region of the state with a long history of large earthquakes. These include a magnitude 7.0 in 1980 and a magnitude 6.8 in 2014.
According to the city’s website, Eureka’s communications center received a high volume of calls, but “no significant damage” was reported.
A 40-year-old Eureka resident said he and his wife were sleeping when it jolted them awake and shook everything, toppling pictures in the house. He said their infant daughter slept through it.
According to him, “It was probably the most violent earthquake I have felt in the 15 years I have lived here.” Our bed was physically moved by the earthquake.
Caroline Titus, a Ferndale resident, tweeted video of toppled furniture and smashed dishes from her darkened home.
We live in a 140-year-old Victorian house. “What fell is clearly a result of the north/south shaking,” she said on Twitter.
In another tweet, she said, “That was a big one.”.
It is the West Coast’s warning system that detects the start of a quake and sends alerts to cellphones in the affected region. This is so people can take safety precautions before strong shaking reaches them.
As of Tuesday morning, 270,000 people had received notifications, according to Ferguson, a spokesperson for Cal OES.
There were thousands of people waking up before 4 a.m. Saturday after a magnitude 3.6 earthquake struck the San Francisco Bay Area a few days earlier.
The epicenter of that earthquake was located in El Cerrito, about a 16-mile drive (25-kilometer drive) away from downtown San Francisco.
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