The Sunday swarm of earthquakes near the town of Brawley, about 130 miles southeast of Redlands and Loma Linda, prompted California Emergency Management Agency and California Geological Survey leaders to meet at the state's Emergency Operations Center in Sacramento yesterday afternoon, according to Cal EMA.
"We've had over a hundred earthquakes so far today, most in the magnitude 3 range," State Geologist Mark Parrish said Sunday. "However there have been eight earthquakes over magnitude 4 and two of those have been over magnitude 5."
were recorded Sunday along the San Andreas Fault south of the Salton Sea in Imperial County, according to the USGS. More than 10 temblors, from magnitude 1.9 to 3.0, were recorded in the Brawley area between 12:01 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Aug. 27.
The strongest, initially recorded at 5.5 magnitude, struck at 1:57 p.m. Aug. 26 near Brawley, where some buildings reportedly sustained minor damage.
Hundreds of people across Southern California reported feeling at least one of the temblors, including residents of San Bernardino, Riverside, Los Angeles, Orange and San Diego counties.
Near Redlands, residents of Yucaipa and Fontana were among those who reported feeling the strongest quake near Brawley, according to the USGS.
A powerful quake on the southern San Andreas Fault, which stretches from the Coachella Valley to the Redlands-Loma Linda area to the Mojave Desert, is believed to be the greatest natural hazard Southern California faces in the near future, according to the USGS.
The San Andreas Fault lies along the junction of the Pacific and North American plates, which are slowly moving in opposite directions.
Cal EMA issued a statement Sunday evening advising that, "for the next 24 hours, continued seismic activity may occur in the areas affected by the 'swarm' of earthquakes that shook the City of Brawley in Imperial County, measuring as high as 5.5 magnitude . . . "
Scientists from California Geological Survey, US Geological Survey, Cal Tech and the Southern California Earthquake Center believe the activity could involve an earthquake as large as, or larger than, Sunday's earthquake - and could cause damage to older structures, Cal EMA stated.
"Additionally, residents of Imperial, San Bernardino, Riverside and San Diego Counties may feel additional earthquakes," Cal EMA advised.
Seismic swarms of this nature can continue, although diminish in magnitude and frequency, over the next several weeks, according to Cal EMA.
"Cal EMA has been, and will continue to be, in close coordination with local authorities to provide assistance and provide timely information regarding the potential ongoing impacts of this event," Cal EMA Secretary Mark Ghilarducci said. The seismic activity Sunday "serves as a reminder to all Californians that an earthquake can strike at any time. Take time now to prepare your family with emergency supplies and a practiced family emergency plan."
Cal EMA advised residents to take the following actions during an earthquake:
· If indoors, stay there. Practice "Duck, Cover, Hold On" by getting under a table or in a corner.
· If outdoors, get into an open area away from trees, building, walls and power lines.
· If driving, pull over to the side of the road and stop. Avoid stopping under overpasses and power lines. Stay inside the car until the shaking is over.
· If in a high-rise building, stay away from windows and outside walls. Practice "Duck, Cover, Hold On." Get under a table or desk. Do not use elevators.
· If in a crowded public place, do not rush for the doors. Move away from the shelves containing objects that could fall.
For more information about what to do before, during and after an earthquake, please contact your local office of emergency services or visit:
Cal EMA www.calema.ca.gov
California Geological Survey www.conserv.ca.gov
American Red Cross www.redcross.org
Federal Emergency Management Agency www.ready.gov