UPDATE: 6.4 Earthquake Biggest to Hit SoCal in 20 Years, Causing Scattered Damage Across Region

Rebekah Sager
July 04, 2019 - 6:44 pm
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Los Angeles — An earthquake rattled a large swath of Southern California and parts of Nevada on Thursday morning, making hanging lamps sway and photo frames on wall shake. There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries.

This is the most powerful earthquake to hit SoCal in 20 years. 

There were at least 2 faults involved, and CalTech says people should expect more earthquakes. 

"The probability is very high.," Lucy Jones, seismologist says. 

Kern County Fire Department reported gas lines in Ridgecrest were shut down. The department says they are concerned with the Dam of Lake Isabella. All July 4 events are canceled in Ridgecrest as of 2:00 pm. Kern County officials confirmed multiple injuries and at least 2 house fires reported in Ridgecrest. 

"No injuries, or catastrophic damage, all the firefighters were out surveying the city. The department of water and power no significant damage. A little bit of minor cracking on the freeway. This is a great time to plan where to go and what to do with your family. Stay alert. Good time to sit with family and plan emergency protocols," Mayor of Los Angeles Eric Garcetti told KNX. 
 

The mayor told KNX that the city is prepared for earthquakes and other major catastrophes should they hit the city. 

 "We've learned so much in the 25 years since Northridge," Garcetti said. "We have great coordination across agencies. And great first-responders around the region," he added. 

Garcetti was at Universal City with his family at the time of the quake. "A lot of visitors were excited by their first earthquake... But every time we have an earthquake, I say this is the time to be prepared... Be sure you know what to do when the next one hits." 

The reason the earthquake felt so long was because it was actually several dozen earthquakes. 

Residents at a local Ridgecrest mobile home community say some people do not have a place to live tonight. People are pooling their resources to make sure those with damaged homes have plenty of provisions and a place to stay.

Here's a list of safety tips to remember during earthquakes. 

There was a report of a house fire in Ridgecrest and structural damage at Ridgecrest Regional Hospital that has caused patient evacuations. And the Mayor of Ridgecrest, 

Officials have reported broken water mains, rock slides, and power lines down. 

President Donald Trump tweeted about the quake a couple of hours after it initially hit the state.

Nick Graehl sent in photos from his father Adam Graehl. 



M 6{*}4 - 12km SW of Searles Valley, CAhttps://t.co/3e222a3nq8 pic.twitter.com/jaTt3GWLYw— Nick Graehl (@nickgraehl) July 4, 2019

Many Angelenos were asking why the ShakeAlertLA app didn't alert people. But, the app didn't fail. ShakeAlertLA is programmed to only issue a warning if stronger, or "light" intensity 4 or greater shaking, hits L.A. County. The USGS says they will lower the leve of the alert. 

The 6.4 magnitude quake measured struck near in the Mojave Desert, about 150 miles (240 kilometers) northeast of Los Angeles, near the town of Ridgecrest, California.

The United State Geological Survey initially said it measured at a 6.6 magnitude.

People from Las Vegas to the Pacific Coast reported feeling a rolling motion and took to social media to report it.

Local emergency agencies also took to social media to ask people to only call 911 for emergencies.

"We are very much aware of the significant earthquake that just occurred in Southern California. Please DO NOT call 9-1-1 unless there are injuries or other dangerous conditions. Don't call for questions please," the LAPD said in a statement published on Twitter.

Ashleigh Chandler, a helicopter rescue EMT at Fort Irwin, California, said the quake happened as she was getting ready for a July 4th party.

"I was just in the living room getting everything ready, we start to feel the shaking, so then I look up and then the wine bottles start rattling and I thought, 'They're going to fall.'

"My sister was in the house and my dog, so we just got everyone outside and then it ended. It was like 15, 20 seconds, maybe. It was pretty good shaking, so I'm out of breath."

"Everyone's OK."

Associated Press contributed to this story.