NEWS

Earthquake 'swarm' strikes off B.C. coast, but no sign of the 'Big One'

12/22/2014 03:33 EST | Updated 02/21/2015 05:59 EST
A 'swarm' of earthquakes that struck off the coast of B.C. over the weekend is not a sign that a large quake is imminent, experts say, but it is still worth taking some precautions.

Earthquakes Canada reported five earthquakes measuring from 4.0 to 5.0 in magnitude, all striking about midway between the northern end of Vancouver Island and Haida Gwaii on Saturday and Sunday.

The first struck at around 3 p.m. PT Saturday about 517 kilometres west-northwest of Vancouver. Another hit at about 7 p.m., and then there were three additional quakes between 1:40 a.m. and 2:45 a.m. early Sunday morning.

The U.S. Geological Survey recorded a sixth quake in the 'swarm'.

There were no reports of damage, and none would be expected given the location of the quakes. The quakes were also not expected to trigger tsunamis.

Dr. Honn Kao, a research scientist with Geological Survey of Canada, says the cluster of seismic activity over the last couple of days was bigger than normal, but not unusual.

"The seismic activity in this particular series is getting smaller and smaller. So I think as far as the swarm itself, it's probably over."

Koa says, while this has nothing to do with a major earthquake, the region is still due for a major shake sometime, and he suggests emergency preparedness kits could make good Christmas presents.

"It's a wonderful reminder for everybody to, perhaps, take a moment, and look back and examine whether or not they are well-prepared for the strike of an earthquake."
 

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