A strong and shallow earthquake registered by the USGS as M5.7 hit Salt Lake City, Utah, U.S. at 13:09 UTC (07:09 LT) on March 18, 2020. The agency is reporting a depth of 10.6 km (6.6 miles). This is the largest earthquake in Utah since M5.9 near St. George in 1992. EMSC is reporting M5.6 at a depth of 8 km (5 miles).
The epicenter was located 5 km (3.1 miles) NNE of Magna (population 26 505), 9.4 km (5.9 miles) NW of West Valley City (population 136 208), 12.4 km (7.7 miles) NW of Kearns (population 35 731), 14 km (8.7 miles) NNW of Oquirrh (population 11 668), and 16.1 km (10 miles) W of Salt Lake City (population 192 627), Utah.
There are 2 500 000 people living within 100 km (62 miles).
139 000 are estimated to have felt very strong shaking, 271 000 strong, 599 000 moderate and 1 270 000 light.
The USGS issued a green alert for shaking-related fatalities. There is a low list of casualties.
A yellow alert was issued for economic losses. Some damage is possible and the impact should be relatively localized. Estimated economic losses are less than 1% of GDP of the United States. Past events with this alert level have required a local or regional level response.
Overall, the population in this region resides in structures that are resistant to earthquake shaking, though vulnerable structures exist. The predominant vulnerable building types are unreinforced brick masonry and reinforced masonry construction.
Recent earthquakes in this area have caused secondary hazards such as landslides that might have contributed to losses.
Image credit: Google, TW/SAM
According to local authorities, the quake was felt across Salt Lake County and in Ogden.
There are no reports of death or injuries but damage reports are coming in.
According to PowerOutage, 74 821 customers in Utah are without power as of 14:46 UTC. "We are currently assessing damages and will restore power as soon as possible," Rocky Mountain Power said, confirming large scale power outage.
The Salt Lake City International Airport is reported to be flooding from broken pipes and evacuating.
22 aftershocks were registered by 14:33 UTC. Magnitudes ranged from 2.5 to 4.4.
Estimated population exposure to earthquake shaking
Selected cities exposed
— Chase Thomason (@ChaseThomason) March 18, 2020
— Ramona (@Ramona01554708) March 18, 2020
Some photos people sent in from the damage of the #Utah #earthquake SLC airport is reported to be flooding from broken pipes and evacuating. This state is so sadly unprepared for this kind of event. #geology #seismology #Preparedness pic.twitter.com/BckkuCMp5m
— Carly Lee (@_Sackung) March 18, 2020
Featured image credit: Google, TW/SAM
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