Earthquake In St George Utah Raises Eyebrows

22-May-2015


Recent Earthquakes In Utah

Friday May 22, 2015

Friday afternoon there was an earthquake measuring 5.4 on the richter scale. The earthquake originated in Caliente, NV approximately 100 miles from St. George, UT. Although thankfully no damages were reported it now goes on record as the 6th largest earthquake in the UT area. Below are the Top Four Biggest Earthquakes in Utah:


  • Hansel Valley Earthquake March 12, 1934 – 6.6 Cache Valley Earthquake Aug 30, 1962 – 5.5
  • Cache Valley Earthquake Aug 30, 1962 – 5.5
  • Sevier Valley Earthquake Sept 29 and Oct 1, 1921 – 5.0 & 6.0
  • Cache Valley Earthquake Aug 30, 1962 – 5.5

The chance of a major earthquake on any one fault is once every 200 years. Almost all segments of the Utah faults have had a major earthquake within the last 500 years except the Salt Lake segment and the Brigham City segment. Is the time coming for the big one in Salt Lake or Brigham or both?

We cannot tell an exact time and date of a large earthquake but with current science we are able to estimate danger areas and possible signs prior. In Utah a flood is much more likely to happen so it has been suggested that people shouldn’t lose sleep over the next big one in Salt Lake City. However the best thing we can do is be prepared. Making sure our buildings and infrastructure are earthquake friendly is not an easy task and will take cooperation and time. Utah has already begun the process of designing earthquake friendly homes and structures. Another thing we can all do to prepare is make sure we have a decent Earthquake Insurance Policy. While this may not help prevent damages it certainly can cover you from any damages caused by an earthquake in Utah. About 13 earthquakes that happen along the wasatch front every year are above magnitude 3.0. In most cases it is better to have many small earthquakes to release some of the pressure than none at all. While this doesn’t guarantee we won’t have a large earthquake in Utah, it sure helps relieve some of the stress both underground and in our minds.

For more information on Utah earthquakes visit http://www.seis.utah.edu/qfacts/utfaq.shtml#uq4.


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