4.4 Earthquake Strikes Berkeley

Kaci Davis (9th), Reporter

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Earthquakes occur when two tectonic plates rub against each other and get caught on one another, and when they finally release, the earthquake occurs. Additionally, an earthquake can occur when a rock breaks along a fault line, which causes energy to release and create seismic waves, thus causing the ground to shake. Our earth’s history has been filled with earthquakes of different magnitudes, which is a number that describes the relative size of the earthquake. Just recently, at the beginning of January, there was an earthquake that occurred in San Francisco.

At 2:39 a.m, a 4.4 magnitude earthquake quickly awakened the San Francisco area abruptly with picture frames falling off walls, some rolling motion, and a shocking, sharp jolt. Although this earthquake only lasted around 10 seconds, it still gave residents of the highly populated area quite the scare.

The damage after the earthquake was very minimal, but it still had the residents in a panic. Some described it as being “fast and hard” while others described it as if “a big truck drove into the building or something blew up downstairs.”

The earthquake was located near the Claremont Hotel and on the Northern part of the Hayward fault, it was said to have a recorded depth of 8 miles. It was originally recorded as a 4.7 magnitude earthquake, but later went down to a 4.4 quake.

With having the Hayward fault going straight through the city, Berkeley has a great risk for earthquakes. Over the past 30 days, there were more than 21 earthquakes, and over the past year there were 344 quakes out of 365 days, some ranging from 1.5 to 4.6 in magnitude.

There are many procedures that people can take to prepare and hopefully, endure the earthquakes. One great way to be ready for an earthquake is to create an emergency plan that will ensure all of your family gets to a safe place, and to have some sort of backpack or disaster kit. During an earthquake, the common and useful way to stay safe is to drop down, take cover, and hold on. It is best to go under something solid and wait until you hear news that it is safe because there could be an aftershock. 

In case of an earthquake, it is best to be prepared and have a plan. Sometimes, it is necessary to take extra precautions in order to ensure yours and your loved one’s safety.

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