We tend to hear about major and minor earthquakes taking place across the West Coast of the United States. This is especially true as the region lies home to the famous San Andreas Fault. However, Sunday morning marked a unique event for the East Coast. The city of Winston-Salem, North Carolina experienced a small magnitude 2.5 earthquake around 8:58 a.m.
According to WXII12, while homes shook in the NC area this morning, Virginia additionally experienced a magnitude 2.6 earthquake a few hours earlier on Sunday.
For now, reports have little else to say as the story is developing. However, at the moment, local authorities have not reported any damage or injuries, though we’ll continue to wait for updates. WFMY2 News reports earthquakes of this size rarely cause damage
Scientists Debate Possibility of Earthquakes Far Below Earth’s Crust
Sunday morning’s east coastal quake is unique as this phenomenon occurs infrequently on the Atlantic side of the country. However, as the current story continues, we remain interested in a very different earthquake that took place several years ago.
As seismologists confirm, earthquakes we typically experience take place, at most, just a few dozen miles beneath Earth’s crust. However, an incredibly deep tremblor that took place six years ago has scientists puzzled. Additionally, it has potentially altered the ways in which we view one of our planet’s most destructive natural disasters.
The earlier quake reportedly occurred at a far deeper distance of 467 miles beneath our planet’s crust. Professionals have located a handful of deep earthquakes in the past, though could not pinpoint their origins. Should the lower mantle quake see confirmation, it will permanently change the way these natural occurrences are understood.
Overall, deep earthquakes are complicated to understand. As we know, topical quakes occur much more frequently as our planet’s tectonic plates collide. However, our planet’s core consists of nothing of the sort. This, therefore, challenges how such strong quakes at the Earth’s lower mantle can even take place.
Hawaiian Residents Experienced Sizeable 6.2 Quake in October
More recently, far from Winston-Salem, NC, Hawaiian residents experienced a scare of their own when a 6.2 earthquake struck the area off the coast of the island state.
While regions across the U.S.’s west coast have experienced far more threatening quakes, the October earthquake prompted scares for resulting volcanic activity as the collection of islands lies home to three active volcanoes.
Fortunately, following the earthquake and its six proceeding aftershocks, the islands saw no proof of resulting volcanic activity.
Interestingly, while earthquakes common to the west coast tend to result from the clashing of the planet’s tectonic plates, the latest Hawaiian earthquake came as a result of something entirely different.
According to the United States Geological Survey, the 6.2 quake came as a result of the “bending of the oceanic plate from the weight of the Hawaiian island chain.” The agency stated this contributor serves as a common cause for the island’s earthquakes.