The Bay Area Was Rocked by Its Strongest Earthquake in 8 Years

The 5.1-magnitude earthquake that rattled Seven Trees, a neighborhood in San Jose, was the strongest Bay Area tremor registered since 2014.

Nothing binds Bay Area locals together quite like earthquake Twitter. Today, October 25th, we residents of this slice of NorCal had a lot to type about when a 5.1-magnitude earthquake rattled off in San Jose.

As recorded by the United States Geological Survey (USGS) —  best believe Twitter was first to sound off with “earthquake???” observations, though — the sizeable tremor stuck about 9 miles east of Seven Trees. The quake’s intensity was felt as far away as Yuba City, a city over 160 miles from where the seismic event had its epicenter.

Earthquakes of this size are incredibly rare in the Bay Area. ABC7’s Drew Tuma noted that the past three decades have only seen three other earthquakes register as 5-plus-magnitude tremors. 

“Back in 2000 an M5.0 in Yountville, 2007 an M5.6 struck Alum rock and the M6.0 in Napa in 2014,” reads a tweet from the SF-based meteorologist. Reports published in the aftermath of the South Napa earthquake — which remains the largest earthquake in over 32 years that hit the San Francisco Bay Area — revealed massive damages.

Pavement buckled and sidewalks tented; buildings had their brick facades crumble; streams were redirected from the raised ground; there was a fatality due to the earthquake, and at least $500 million in economic losses.

As for today’s South Bay tremor, it occurred along Calaveras Fault — a faultline seismologists estimate is capable of producing a magnitude 6.7 or larger earthquake by 2033. The 5.1-magnitude shake, thankfully, didn’t see that policy to fruition; the moderate quake is expected to have caused some damages, but none on the scale seen after 2014’s Napa tremor.

As is protocol, all BART trains were halted, and BART tweeted riders can “expect major delays systemwide while we follow our safety procedures.”

Maybe we should go ahead and make sure we’ve got earthquake insurance…. for sure.

Feature image: Screenshot via USGS

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