4.1 Magnitude Quake Strikes In South Carolina

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EartyhquakeEDGEFIELD, SC. (CNN, Feb 15th, 2014)-  A 4.1 magnitude earthquake struck Friday night in west-central South Carolina, the U.S. Geological Survey reported.

The quake was the strongest to hit South Carolina since 2002, local emergency management officials said. The quake was centered 7 miles (12 kilometers) west-northwest of Edgefield, which is about 25 miles north of Augusta, Georgia, and 60 miles southwest of Columbia, South Carolina. The town of Edgefield has some 4,750 residents, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

The USGS estimates the quake’s depth was about 3 miles (4.6 kilometers). The same federal agency initially estimated a 4.4 magnitude quake.

An emergency dispatcher in Edgefield said there were no reports of damage or injuries tied to the tremor. Columbia County, Georgia, and the South Carolina Emergency Management Division also reported no damage or injuries.

Still, the quake was big enough to be felt as far away as metropolitan Atlanta some 160 miles west. The shaking stirred up a lot of instant reactions online in an area recently battered by a powerful winter storm. But unlike the snow and ice that just fell, the tenor of the tremor banter appeared to be light. “Earthquake … don’t even think about canceling school,” one tweeter from South Carolina wrote. “My KIDS are going to school next week if they have to sit in parking lot.”

Another Palmetto State resident was incredulous about the roller coaster Mother Nature has been on lately: “So, South Carolina has had 70° weather, snow, and now an earthquake all in one week…”

Friday’s quake was actually the 13th earthquake in South Carolina in the past 12 months, the South Carolina Emergency Management Division said. The state usually experiences 15 to 20 earthquakes a year, the agency said.

In November, 2002, a magnitude 4.4 earthquake hit near Charleston. Friday’s quake is the strongest one since that quake, the agency said.

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