What the [beep] is going on?

Yes, that was an Earthquake (5.4 Magnitude)

Now the tornado sirens are going off. I am not going to go into the basement of my house after an Earthquake for many hours, however (there is a massive fault through here, and if it about to finish going, under my 100 year old house is not where I want to be. I also don’t see anything really bad on radar.)

My husband is currently traveling, and the dogs just don’t understand my current 5am freak out.

This is not my week.


  1. Kristin Wenzel April 18, 2008 at 6:53 am #

    An earthquake!?

    In the MidWest? How rare! We are relatively used to them out here in Seattle (and more so in San Francisco, the town from which I just reloacated back to Seattle), but I haven’t heard of them taking place in the midwest except under extreme geophysical circumstances?


    Hope everything is okay!

    An avid reader in Seattle, WA

  2. Paolo Amoroso April 18, 2008 at 8:18 am #

    I have put together a simple demonstration tool, a web mashup developed with Yahoo! Pipes, for displaying the locations and other information about the latest earthquakes:


    Click “Run Pipe” for an update. See also the satellite view on the map (Sat) and the list (List) of entries with additional data. You can get updates via RSS, email, phone and more.

    I hope you, your family and your property are safe.

  3. Richard B. Drumm April 18, 2008 at 9:42 am #

    Just look here:
    for info on the seismic underpinnings of today’s earthquake.
    California tends to capture the public imagination, but the New Madrid fault is a concern. I hope your house holds up and your nerves hold up too! Eek! Whatta way to start the day! Coffee! Coffee! Aak, pfft, dog lips!

    Cool site, Paolo! Today’s fun & games is #20 on the map.
    5.2 Richter, 11.6 km deep…
    It looks to be off the usual area for the New Madrid Zone, though, being almost at Vincennes. It just goes to show you to expect the unexpected… If that was possible…

  4. Doc Kinne April 18, 2008 at 10:40 am #

    Well, tech seems to be working at the house, and you’re currently on Skype so I have to assume you and the dogs are OK.

    I’ve lived through three earthquakes in NY in my life…and I’ve not felt any of them. I’ll tell you, especially in college, I was unhappy. 🙂 “Waddya mean we had an earthquake? I didn’t feel anything! RATS!!”

  5. Stephen Uitti April 18, 2008 at 10:46 am #

    I felt nothing here in Detroit. I’d have been asleep, and i’ve slept through a hurricane. You’re not that far away, are you? 6 hour drive maybe?

    The old houses in San Fran are the ones that survived multiple earth quakes. Your 100 year old house has seen at least a couple, i’d imagine.

    It’d be my 1967 house that should be a worry. It saw no flooding the other year when we had the biggest rain on record. Who needs flood insurance?

  6. Paolo Amoroso April 18, 2008 at 11:00 am #

    Richard: the event # on the map is probably no longer valid because the list is continually updated with new entries. Old ones are renumbered and eventually discarded after a day or so.

    I’m glad you like the tool. It’s simple yet instructive. Before developing it, I assumed that one of the most shaken areas is Japan, possibly because of media coverage bias. But the Quakescope map shows that most of the quakes are in areas around Western US and Alaska.

    Disclaimer: I’m not a geophysicist, I just fake one in Quakescope.

  7. Astrogeek April 18, 2008 at 11:00 am #

    5.4 is a moderate quake. I wouldn’t expect a lot of damage, except for falling breakables. I imagine some stores near Mt. Carmel have a lot of cleaning up this morning.

  8. Scott April 18, 2008 at 11:19 am #

    Woke up just the same this morning. Realized right away what was going on. Food for thought: after the shaking was finished I called my mom an hour to the North and it was still shaking there.

    WOW as I type this AFTERSHOCKS 🙂


  9. Kristin Wenzel April 18, 2008 at 11:25 am #

    Oh, I forgot all about the New Madrid seismic area.


    This is all over the news this morning here on the west coast.

    Glad to year everyone is alright!


  10. Scott April 18, 2008 at 11:50 am #

    This quake wasn’t on the acutal New Madrid Fault, it was on a smaller fault nearby called the Wabash Fault.


  11. Freiddie April 18, 2008 at 3:44 pm #

    I hope things are alright over there.

  12. John M. April 18, 2008 at 4:44 pm #

    Yeah, we felt it all the way over here in Louisville.

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