On Sunday evening, March 10th, a sizeable magnitude 6.9 earthquake rattled the Northern California coast. The quake was centered 50 miles west of Eureka and about 4 miles beneath the Pacific seabed. It was followed by 5 to 6 aftershocks, one measuring magnitude 4.6.
The following Monday afternoon, March 11th, Oregon experienced a magnitude 5.1 earthquake about 250 miles northwest of Coos Bay. No damage was reported.
The California quake was felt widely across the region of Humboldt County, although no damage was reported. More than 3,000 people reported on the USGS website that they felt the quake. Some reported a long, rolling shake that woke their children and knocked items off shelves. Some of those responding live across the border in Oregon. “This lasted longer than any earthquake I’ve ever felt,” one woman reported who lives about a mile from the coast in Ferndale, near Eureka. “It just kept going and going, very slowly and softly. It was not violent. It almost felt like you were in a boat that was rocking. The animals, they felt it. My two horses were running around out by the barn, and my dogs, six dogs, were ready to get out of the house.”
Eureka experienced a magnitude 5.6 earthquake in February, 2012 that did not cause serious damage. However, in 2010 a magnitude 6.5 quake struck offshore that broke glass in some buildings and caused a few bumps and cuts among residents. That earthquake was about 25 miles closer to land than Sunday night’s quake.