About 30 earthquakes strike in Southern California 'sequence'
A cluster of earthquakes that began Tuesday night continued Wednesday in northern Orange County, keeping residents on edge but causing little significant damage.
Photos emerged of bottles falling off a supermarket shelf in Anaheim Hills, but fire officials said they didn't get reports of anything more serious.
At a news conference Wednesday morning, Kate Hutton of the U.S. Geological Survey at Caltech said there had been at least 30 quakes since last night, but only three could be felt by residents.
"This is all part of the same earthquake sequence; they're all in the same area,'' Hutton told reporters at the briefing, which was televised by several TV stations.
Experts said more aftershocks are likely.
"It shook us pretty good. We’ve felt earthquakes before so it came as no surprise,” said Chris Nordyke, director of marketing at the Richard Nixon Library and Birthplace in Yorba Linda. “It shook open the door but nothing fell off the shelves.”
He said an inspection of the facility is underway.
Law enforcement officials in Orange County said there were no immediate reports of damage from the earthquake that hit near Yorba Linda about 9:30 a.m. (The Wednesday morning quake was initially downgraded to 4.1 but then upgraded back to 4.5.)
Lt. Santo Porto of the Brea Police Department, which serves that city and Yorba Linda, said police had evacuated the department to check the structure but found no problems. “There’s no damage in either city that we’ve heard so far,” he said.
Orange County sheriff’s officials said they had received no initial damage reports either.
The series of quakes -- including the 4.5 quake Wednesday morning and 4.4 quake Tuesday night -- has rattled residents in the area.
“No one really freaked but everyone sure felt it,” said Roxann Reeves, supervisor at a Starbucks on Yorba Linda Boulevard, where about 20 customers were in line when the aftershock hit. “We’d all just been talking about the one last night.”
The first earthquake hit near Yorba Linda at 11:23 p.m.; the second — upgraded from an initial magnitude of 2.2 — followed about a minute later, according to data from the U.S. Geological Survey. About a dozen aftershocks ranging from magnitudes of 1.2 to 2.2 rumbled the same area until about 3 a.m. Wednesday.
--Rebecca Trounson, David Zahniser, Richard Winton and Kimi Yoshino