4.2 magnitude earthquake shakes residents near St. Louis

Bryan Alaspa's picture

While most people think of earthquakes hitting California, they do hit the Midwest, and overnight a 4.2 magnitude quake shook residents of Missouri and Illinois.

The earthquake hit the area of Missouri known as Sullivan, which is near the city of St. Louis. The earthquake also shook residents in some cities and towns in Illinois such as Quincy and the capital of Springfield.

According to reports, the actual earthquake was registered at the U.S. Geological Survey as a 4.2 magnitude earthquake. The epicenter was 14 miles east southeast of Sullivan. The earthquake hit at 3:10 a.m. and occurred about 3.2 miles below ground.

The city that is actually the closest to the epicenter is Richwoods, Missouri. That city is located about six miles northeast of where the center of the quake was located.

No damage or injuries had been reported in St. Louis or the surrounding areas after the quake. The U.S. Geological Survey became aware of how widespread the tremors were felt when about 2,600 logged on to their website to log that they had felt the tremors. Most of the reports said it was just a low vibration and a very subtle swaying or shaking. Many said that the tremors lasted about 30 seconds and more than 100 residents who logged in were from the St. Louis area.

Some areas did report slightly more violent shaking. For example, some residents from Potosi, Missouri, reported a more violent shaking sensation. Many people in that area said that they felt their homes shaking and heard dishes rattling and windows and doors rattling in their frames. Some even reported hearing the walls cracking and minor cracks in infrastructure.

Missouri is home to the world’s largest inland fault, known as the New Madrid Fault. Earthquakes that happen inland tend to be much more powerful than those in the ocean, at least in terms of how far they are felt. When the New Madrid Fault had a major earthquake in the 1800s it caused the Mississippi River to flow backwards and it rang church bells as far away as Boston.

As far as the earthquake last night, it was not nearly as powerful. However, the tremors were reported as far away as Kentucky, Ohio and Alabama.

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