Southern California’s most intense earthquake in 20 years took place yesterday. The epicentre of the quake – measuring a 6.4 on the Richter scale – was close to Ridgecrest, a city in Kern County surrounded by mountain ranges, roughly 150 miles from Los Angeles.
There was a considerable amount of damage in Ridgecrest, which is not far to the south-west of the epicentre, according to geophysicist John Rundle. Splits in the roads, fallen power lines, shattered glass, and cracked walls were some of the scenes after the quake’s destruction.
The earthquake also affected China Lake, a US Navy bomb testing facility used to assess aircraft and weapons. A spokesperson for the facility said that there was some noteworthy damage to contend with, such as fires, water leakage, and hazardous material spillage. Yesterday, a spokesman for the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, Brad Alexander, said that fire trucks and search and rescue parties would be aiding the Ridgecrest region where several buildings were thought to be on fire.
“This may not be over. There could be more earthquakes happening in the area and anyone listening that’s in that region should be prepared to drop, cover, and hold on,” warned Alexander.
Ridgecrest Mayor, Peggy Breeden, said that numerous residents were hit by falling objects from buildings, and several gas lines were broken. “We are used to earthquakes but we’re not used to this significance,” said Breeden.
“The whole house shook violently and we both ran out into the street. This went on for about 10 to 15 seconds, we were really scared,” stated Ridgecrest resident, Stephen Sykes. “Currently we are getting ready in case there’s another one. We are moving items onto the floor and have turned off the gas supply. We will probably sleep outside tonight”.