Small magnitude 3.8 earthquake 5 miles east of Wichita, Kansas, United States
Wed, 30 Dec 2020, 13:0413:04 PM | BY: EARTHQUAKEMONITOR
An earthquake of magnitude 3.8 occurred only 19 minutes ago 5 miles east of Wichita, Kansas, United States, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) reported.
3.8 quake 30 Dec 5:04 am (GMT -6)
The quake hit at a very shallow depth of 3.1 miles beneath the epicenter near Wichita, Sedgwick County, Kansas, USA, early morning on Wednesday 30 December 2020 at 5:04 am local time. The exact magnitude, epicenter, and depth of the quake might be revised within the next few hours or minutes as seismologists review data and refine their calculations, or as other agencies issue their report.
Our monitoring service identified a second report from the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre (EMSC) which listed the quake at magnitude 3.8 as well.
Based on the preliminary seismic data, the quake was probably felt by many people in the area of the epicenter. It should not have caused significant damage, other than objects falling from shelves, broken windows, etc.
In Eastborough (pop. 770) located 2 miles from the epicenter, the quake should have been felt as light shaking.
Weak shaking might have been felt in Bellaire (pop. 3,900) located 4 miles from the epicenter, Wichita (pop. 390,000) 5 miles away, Andover (pop. 12,700) 6 miles away, Park City (pop. 7,600) 8 miles away, Derby (pop. 23,500) 11 miles away, Haysville (pop. 11,200) 11 miles away, Valley Center (pop. 7,200) 11 miles away, and Augusta (pop. 9,300) 15 miles away.
Update Wed, 30 Dec 2020, 13:04Wichita, the largest city in the state of Kansas, was hit early December morning at 5:04 am local time by a medium-sized earthquake of magnitude 3.8 on the Richter scale, and was felt by many people in the Wichita metropolitan area (pop. 645,000) who were woken up by very noticeable seismic activity creating alarm in the region. According to firsthand reports that we received through our earthquake monitoring feedback mechanism, people near the epicenter described the earthquake as "nerve-wracking", "like being in an amusement park ride", "rattling vibration", "loud rumbling", "violent shaking" and many more comments. Many users described the movement as up and down, rolling, a hard bump, and swaying movement. We even received reports of small objects falling from tables and the sound of cracks in homes.
The overwhelming majority of earthquakes are caused by natural phenomena and tension building up between tectonic plates and along fault lines. It is interesting to note, however, a recent post by insurancejournal.com which quotes Kansas regulators as saying that "Recent Wichita Quakes not Caused by Oil, Gas Activity", in line with the article's title.
Small earthquakes are common in Kansas, and the strongest one, known as the 1867 Manhattan earthquake in Riley County, did cause damage and injuries then. A strong earthquake along the Humboldt Fault Zone and particularly the Nemaha Ridge in the future could pose a threat to the Tuttle Creek Reservoir, if the dam's walls break.
If you felt it, report it through our site or app right now!
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Date & time: Wed, 30 Dec 11:04 UTC
Depth: 5.0 km
Epicenter latitude / longitude: 37.705°N / 97.2448°W
Primary data source: USGS