Southern California Shaken by 4.6 Magnitude Earthquake Near Malibu

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Dr. Jessica Nelson
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Southern California Shaken by 4.6 Magnitude Earthquake Near Malibu

On the 53rd anniversary of the devastating 1971 San Fernando earthquake, Southern California was once again reminded of its geological vulnerability when a magnitude 4.6 earthquake shook the region, with an epicenter near Malibu. The temblor was widely felt across the region, from the Malibu coast to Orange County and east to downtown Los Angeles.

Details of the Earthquake

The earthquake occurred at a depth of 13 kilometers in the Santa Monica Mountains, approximately 35 miles west of downtown Los Angeles. It was initially measured as a 4.7 magnitude quake before being downgraded to 4.6. According to the Los Angeles Fire Department, despite the widespread shaking, there were no immediate indications of damage or injuries.

The U.S. Geological Survey's early warning system gave some residents a few seconds of warning before the shaking started. This earthquake was not related to a magnitude 5.7 earthquake that hit the southern edge of Hawaii’s Big Island on the same day.

Aftermath and Aftershocks

Following the main event, there were several aftershocks, the highest of which was registered as 3.0. Experts warn that there is a small chance - about 5% - of a larger quake occurring within the next 24 hours. However, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has confirmed that there is no tsunami threat related to this earthquake.

Area Impact

The shaking was felt across wide swaths of Los Angeles, Ventura, and Orange counties, and as far as the southern Inland Empire. The quake also raised concerns about potential landslides, particularly since the area had received heavy rainfall in the past week.

It's worth noting that the earthquake occurred close to the Malibu Coast Fault, which has been the source of several earthquakes in the past. The jolt was felt as far south as San Diego and as far north as Goleta.

Precautionary Measures

In the wake of the earthquake, the Los Angeles County Fire Department is conducting surveys across the city to assess potential damage. Meanwhile, residents are encouraged to review their emergency preparedness plans and ensure they are ready for any future seismic activity.

While this earthquake did not result in significant damage or injuries, it serves as a stark reminder of the importance of earthquake preparedness in earthquake-prone regions like Southern California.