North Carolina Hit By Most Powerful Earthquake in 100 Years

Date: 2020-08-10 04:44:41

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The most powerful earthquake to hit North Carolina in more than 100 years shook much of the state early Sunday, rattling homes, businesses and residents.

The National Weather Service in Greenville said the 5.1-magnitude temblor struck at 8:07 a.m., following a much smaller quake several hours earlier.

There were no reports of serious injuries, but some minor structural damage was reported in Sparta, as well as cracks in roads. Images on social media also showed items knocked off of grocery store shelves.

The U.S. Geological Survey said on its website that there are chances for one or more aftershocks in the next week, forecasting a 45% chance for earthquakes of magnitude 3 or greater. The chances of another quake as strong as the one on Sunday or greater was about 1%, the geological survey said.

Alleghany County, which includes Sparta, declared a state of emergency Sunday afternoon.

Nisha Thomas was at her home in Charlotte when it happened.

“We were laying down in the bed, just sleeping, and it startled us. All of a sudden we hear this big tremble. It trembled our house. And then it shook our bed. And we was like, ‘what in the world was that?’ I didn’t know what it was. Honestly, I don’t even know if it was earthquake or not. It really startled me.”

“I didn’t even know that earthquakes actually exist in North Carolina. So I was really startled. It was small, thank God, nothing. Nothing happened to our house. Nothing broke. I just didn’t realize that it would happen here in North Carolina honestly.”

It was the largest earthquake to hit the state since 1916, when a magnitude 5.5 quake occurred near Skyland, the weather service said.

The quake was felt in nearby states including Virginia, South Carolina and Tennessee.

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