Friday, April 18, 2008

Weird Things Go Bump in the Night

This is going to sound strange, but here it is: I woke up this morning at around 4:20 AM (5:20 AM EST) to shaking. My entire apartment was shaking, just a little. I was very calm and lie thinking about the after effects of earthquakes that I used to feel when I lived in LA.

When I woke up, I wrote down the time and date of the shaking, so that I could compare notes in the morning with the Center for Earthquake Research and Information (located in Memphis!).

This morning, I checked online and learned that just before I woke up to the light shaking, there was in fact an earthquake a few hundred miles away in Illinios. So far, people have reporting feeling its after effects as far down as St. Louis, MO so, I documented Memphis too.

Let me add that for some reason, I'm pretty sensitive to this sort of shaking. When I lived in LA, I'd wake up to a tiniest earthquake, and my next door neighbor would sleep right through it. We'd have a disagreement about whether or not it had even happened, and I'd have to pull up the earthquake site to prove my point. :~)

Here's the map of the tremor that I felt last night.

As you can see, it happened early this morning and the magnitude was at a 5.2 -- pretty strong.

Update: The Wall Street Journal has an article today detailing the quake. They say it was actually a 5.4. Check out the article here (or read it below).

Update 2: One of my neighbors also woke up to the earthquake this morning. SO glad it wasn't just me! :~)
WEST SALEM, Illinois -- An earthquake struck the U.S. state of Illinois early Friday, and it appeared to rival the strongest temblor ever recorded in the country's Midwest region.

The quake jolted residents in several nearby states as well, but no injuries or significant property damage were immediately reported.

The quake, measuring 5.4 on the Richter scale, hit just before 4:37 a.m. local time (1037 GMT) and was centered six miles from West Salem, Illinois.

"It shook our house where it woke me up," said David Behm of Philo, Illinois. "Windows were rattling, and you could hear it. The house was shaking inches. For people in central Illinois, this is a big deal. It's not like California."

The jolts were felt in a region that included parts of the states of Indiana, Kentucky, Illinois, Missouri and Arkansas, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

Its Web site said earthquakes seldom occur in the area, and that the largest recorded earthquake in the region -- also a magnitude 5.4 -- caused damage in southern Illinois in 1968.

Friday's quake shook buildings in central Chicago and the cities of Indianapolis, Indiana; Cincinnati, Ohio; and St. Louis, Missouri.

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