L.A. region rattled by earthquakes

By Jessica Soto | News Editor

By Jessica Hernandez | Contributing Writer

According to the United States Geological Survey website the dormant fault that runs through Citrus College lies on the Alquist-Priolo fault zone.

Though dormant fault lines can go more than 100 years without any seismic activity, the recent earthquakes raise questions regarding the effects those earthquakes will have on Citrus’ fault line.

Two earthquakes have occurred in the San Gabriel Valley in the last week.

The first, a 5.1-magnitude, classified as a moderate earthquake, struck a mile outside of La Habra at 9:09 p.m. March 28.

The second occurred March 29, a mile outside of Rowland Heights and measured 4.1-magnitude.

Two foreshocks occurred approximately an hour prior to the La Habra temblor. One registered at a 3.6-magnitude and the other was measured at a 2.1-magnitude.

The La Habra epicenter was located two to three miles below the surface and is the first earthquake to measure greater than a 5.0 magnitude on this fault line since 2008.

A USGS representative stated that an earthquake on one fault, like the Puente Hills fault where the La Habra temblor occurred, does not directly affect another.

Therefore, Citrus’ fault line was not affected by the temblor or its succeeding aftershocks.

Large tremors such as these have left people wondering if we are prepared for larger scale earthquakes, or if a stronger magnitude may be too much for Southern California to handle.

According to the Los Angeles Times there have been more than 100 reported aftershocks since the first earthquake hit La Habra.

“Fire and life safety, access and structural safety are all in order,” according to Fred Diamond, director of facilities. Diamond is confident that all the buildings on campus follow state mandates.

Evan Hicks, 22, communications major, was on the 101 freeway when the 5.1 earthquake occurred.

“It felt like a wave. I felt bumps in the road and thought it was just normal,” Hicks said.

Hicks followed by saying, “It’s California, you’ve got to expect them here.”

The earthquake in La Habra left Southern California rolling for at least 30 seconds.

Although this may not seem like much time with the size of the earthquake, the length of time can directly affect the severity of property damages.

Major reports of damages caused by these temblors at businesses were broken windows and shattered merchandise.

Officials in Fullerton, Brea and La Habra, the cities hit the hardest, still have red tagged properties while they assess damages.

When a building is red tagged it means that the structure is unsafe or unstable.

Fullerton still has 25 homes red tagged due to the temblor.

It’s been 20 years since a strong earthquake has rocked Southern California.

The Northridge earthquake on Jan. 17, 1994 measured at a 6.7-magnitude.  It hit Los Angeles with a force that collapsed freeways, started fires and killed dozens of people.

The overall cost of damages was $49 billion.

Having an earthquake kit ready and an emergency plan prepared can decrease the chance of an individual getting seriously injured.

The kit should include enough water and food to last each person three days.

Emergency plans should include information informing people to stay away from objects that could fall and get into a door way or under a table if possible. There should also be an evacuation plan.

The American Red Cross website,Preparesocal.org, demonstrates how to obtain an earthquake kit, make a plan and be prepared.

For more information, including tips about what to do to recover post earthquake, go to earthquakecountry.org.