The AP reported:
A 5.4 earthquake early Friday rocked people awake as far away as Indiana, surprising residents unaccustomed to such a large Midwest temblor.
The quake just before 4:37 a.m. was centered 6 miles from West Salem, Ill., and 66 miles from Evansville, Ind. There were no immediate reports of injuries.
“It shook our house where it woke me up,” said David Behm of Philo, 10 miles south of Champaign. “Windows were rattling, and you could hear it. The house was shaking inches. For people in central Illinois, this is a big deal. It’s not like California.”
The quake also shook tall buildings in downtown Indianapolis, about 160 miles northeast of the epicenter.
Authorities have close the two outside lanes of the Kingshighway viaduct at Southwest and Shaw in south St. Louis. Chunks of concert fell from the span during an earthquake just after 4:30 a.m. Friday morning.
- Think “New Madrid”
- Some interesting comments below from GatewayPundit
- No, it’s not like California, it’s potentially much much worse. I shudder to think of the damage and the loss of life if the New Madrid fault rumbles to life again.
- Nahanni Make sure you check the foundation of your house and see that it is still level.
Yes, the New Madrid is much more dangerous than anything in California. This is due to the nature of the fault and the land that sits on top of it.
The New Madrid fault extends from approximately Cairo, IL to Blytheville, AR and the reason why it is there is that it is essentially a buried rift valley. In it’s youth it might have looked like the area of the Great Rift valley and Red Sea areas of Africa. It was formed when Pangea broke up and the Atlantic ocean was born.
That ancient rift valley is why the Mississippi river flows in the direction it does-to the north of Cairo is the stable North American craton, to the south is the Mississippi embayment. Yes, at one time the ocean came all the way up there. The rift valley provided the river with a shallow valley to go through inbetween the ancient Applachians and the Ozark/Ouichita mountain chains.
The make up of the soil above the New Madrid is what makes it so dangerous. The soil is made up of millions of years of river sediment. In a California earthquake the rock “moves and snaps” and alot of the force of quakes there gets absorbed by the ocean and seabed. The New Madrid is like a huge Chinese gong-bang it and it vibrates loud and long and it’s “sound” will carry over much greater distances then a California quake. This is why you are seeing structural damage in places like Louisville and the quake was felt in places like Indianapolis. A 7.0 quake would make the ground roll like waves on the ocean and probably level Memphis or St. Louis (depending on where the epicenter was) and surrounding cities for 100 miles.
One somewhat interesting artifact of the big New Madrid earthquake in the 19th century can still be seen to day in farmers fields. There will be these big sand patches surrounded by nice black dirt. The sand came from “sand geysers” that shot up when the ground “liquefied” during that earthquake.