4.2 Magntitude Earthquake Rocks Michigan, Chicago, And Toronto

Posted: May 2 2015, 8:33pm CDT | by , in News | Also on the Geek Mind


4.2 Magntitude Earthquake Rocks Michigan, Chicago, and Toronto
Credit: USGS

4.2 magnitude earthquake on Saturday, May 2, shifted Michiganders feet and left some puzzled at what the feeling was.

On mid-afternoon Saturday, May 2, news reports of an earthquake around Galesburg, Michigan hit the internet.

The U.S. Geological Survey said the quake had a 4.2 magnitude that hit about 5.1 miles from Galesburg.  According to USGS data, the town only has approximately 2,000 people and located in Kalamazoo County.

MLive.com, Michigan's go-to news source, stated there was "little or no damage" to building structures and no injuries reported in Grand Rapids. Meanwhile, residents from the area to Toronto took to Twitter to discuss the unusual occurrence.

Fox Sports journalist Jon Morosi noted that despite living on the West Coast, the first time ever feeling an earthquake was "at home in Michigan." And quite a few users remarked on the fact in the last week, Michigan has faced snow, 75 degree weather, and now an earthquake.

Those in Chicago describe feeling the movements as well. The Chicago Tribune said the earthquake was felt in the surrounding areas of the city, as well communities near Indianapolis, Indiana.

But Grand Rapids residents opened up to MLive about the experience.

Dawn Streng told the press, “I didn't even know we could experience an earthquake in Michigan.” At the time of the tremor, she and her 12-year-old son were in the kitchen preparing lemonade.

The shaking shocked the Ada resident. “It was so startling where I was like, 'stop don't move.'” However, the mother was glad no one was hurt in the unexpected shifting.

Kurt Kindig described how he thought it was initially a truck moving heavy equipment, a common occurrence in the state, but “then it got more and more intense.”

Living about 11 minutes away from Ada in Cannon Township, the man believes the brevity helped him not understand what was going at first. “I didn't really consciously figure it out until it was over."

Residents across the region are just grateful no one was hurt. The Detroit Free Press spoke with USGS geophysicist John Bellini, who said the last earthquake was in August 1947 and topped out at a 4.6 magnitude. Reports of tremors in 1973 and 2012 were reported but data could not be located.

More interesting was the fact the 1947 one was located only 30 miles or so southeast from Saturday’s epicenter. Michigan is generally safe since the state is not located near tectonic plates or fault lines, so there should be no or very minimal aftershocks.

And Governor Rick Snyder released a statement, noting “it's rare for Michigan to experience earthquakes” but not entirely uncommon. He also pointed out the benefit of the quake not being more serious.

"There are no immediate reports of injuries or damage because of today's earthquake, and that's fortunate because we are acutely aware of the challenges posed by such natural disasters in other parts of the world recently."

Referencing the devastating Nepal earthquake last week, the Republican politician sought to calm any misunderstanding or confusion with Michiganders.

“The Michigan State Police is ready to assist in any emergency that strikes our state.” Also citing that Emergency Management and Homeland Security Division were on call to help as needed as well.

And confusion is something that Grand Rapids Police Lt. Theresa Budzilek faced a lot of when the quake first hit. She told MLive that many people called to report the strange rocking, the unexpected movement. Just like the National Weather Service and Kent County police dispatchers.

Across social media, regional citizens are still discussing the effect and the unexpected earthquake. If Bellini is right, they’ll at least be safe from aftershocks.


Sources: Chicago Tribune, Detroit Free Press, Facebook, MLive.com, Twitter, USGS

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