Magnitude 6.2 earthquake hits Humboldt County coast, damage reported – CBS San Francisco

HUMBOLDT COUNTY (CBS SF) – A strong earthquake hit the coast of Humboldt County on Monday afternoon, causing minor damage in some communities and triggering the ShakeAlert system.

According to the US Geological Survey, the magnitude 6.2 earthquake struck at 12:10 p.m. Authorities said the epicenter is in the Pacific Ocean, about 44 miles southwest of Eureka and about 25 miles west of Petrolia, the community closest to the epicenter.

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The earthquake caused the ShakeAlert system to activate on phones along the Redwood Coast.

Map of the magnitude 6.2 earthquake off the coast of Humboldt County on December 20, 2021 (USGS)

Visitors to the USGS website from across northern California said they felt the quake, including some in the Bay Area, as well as residents of Lake and Mendocino counties.

Officials said there should be no tsunami resulting from this earthquake.

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The damage reported as a result of the earthquake was minor. In the town of Ferndale, about 20 miles south of Eureka, store windows were smashed and items were knocked over.

A smashed window at Abraxas Shoes and Leather in Ferndale after a magnitude 6.2 earthquake off the coast of Humboldt County on December 20, 2021 (Abraxas Shoes and Leather)

A smashed window at Abraxas Shoes and Leather in Ferndale after a magnitude 6.2 earthquake off the coast of Humboldt County on December 20, 2021 (Abraxas Shoes and Leather)

Damage to the interior of the Valley Grocery in Ferndale following an earthquake that hit the coast of Humboldt County on December 20, 2021 (Valley Grocery)

Damage to the interior of the Valley Grocery in Ferndale following an earthquake that hit the coast of Humboldt County on December 20, 2021 (Valley Grocery)

The Humboldt County Emergency Services Office has urged residents and businesses to report the damage on the county’s website.

According to USGS scientist Sarah Minson, such damage is to be expected during a strong earthquake. “Here in California, where you have strong building codes, something built to code really shouldn’t experience severe structural damage in an earthquake,” Minson told KPIX 5.

Minson said there were 65 aftershocks of magnitude 2.5 or greater in the three hours after the quake, which is expected to decrease in the hours ahead. “But the number of aftershocks is decreasing exponentially over time, so every moment we talk about aftershocks, the number of those you’re expecting is going down,” she said.

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There are no immediate reports of injuries.


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