When the world is still shaking

Pandemics, protests and earthquakes

Rebecca Neipp

News Review Staff Writer

When the world is still shakingAmid the turmoil of a historic pandemic and a painful national conflict, Ridgecrest had its most powerful reminder Wednesday evening — nearly 11 months after our 6.4- and 7.1- magnitude earthquakes — that the shaking of our foundations is as literal as it is figurative.

At 6:32 p.m. on June 3, a 5.5 temblor hit 14 miles east of Ridgecrest. According to Dr. Lucy Jones, Caltech expert, the epicenter was at the southern end of the same zone that triggered last year’s quakes. “This is a large, late aftershock,” she said.

“Why is this considered a Ridgecrest aftershock after almost a year? Because the rate of the seismic events per day is still much higher than the rate before that earthquake sequence started.”

The 1994 Northridge quake, smaller in magnitude than the largest from the 2019 Ridgecrest Sequence, caused aftershocks for years afterward, said Jones.

So far, officials believe that no significant damage or injury resulted from the earthquake. However, Caltrans maintenance crews found damage during their inspections of local roadways.

“A previously repaired, small sinkhole from the earthquakes in July of 2019 reopened at the top of Brown Road and US 395 at post mile 24.6. The rocks are being removed and the small sinkhole is being repaired at this time.”

There was also a small amount of rockfall on State Route 178 in Poison Canyon, reported officials. “No damage to bridges or culverts was found.”

Pictured: A large crack forms in Highway 178 as a result of the 2019 quakes. - News Review file photo

Story First Published: 2020-06-05