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Small 3.8 Quake Off Southern Oregon Coast

Published 04/26/2018 at 4:56 PM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection Staff

Small 3.8 Quake Off Southern Oregon Coast

(Charleston, Oregon) – A small quake struck off the southern Oregon coast early Thursday morning, about 70 miles west of Charleston. The submarine quake caused no damage but there reports it was felt as far away as Eugene.

The earthquake was a magnitude 3.8, which hit at 1:44 a.m. The USGS is listing the quake as 67 miles west of an incorporated town called Barview, which is immediately north of Charleston. This is not to be confused with the town of Barview on the north Oregon coast, next to Garibaldi.

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The quake was centered about six miles deep. That location is 98 miles SW of Newport.

For a time, the USGS had two earthquakes listed around that location at the same time of 1:44 a.m., but about three seconds apart. A scientist with the USGS office in Seattle told Oregon Coast Beach Connection it took some time to verify the and unify two different sensor readings.

There were no tsunami warnings issued: it takes a magnitude 7.0 quake or higher to generate a tsunami.

The last sizable quakes off the Oregon coast happened back in January, when three shook about 140 miles west of Coos Bay, on the southern Oregon coast. Each was about 10 kilometers in depth, or 6.2 miles down.

Just a week before those, a 7.9 earthquake in Alaska did generate a brief tsunami watch for the Oregon coast in the middle of the night, but it was canceled after about two hours.

Submarine quakes in this region are quite normal and a regular part of the geological processes on the sea floor of the Oregon coast. It's all part of a network of faults called the Cascadia Subduction Zone, a 600-mile long stretch that will one day bring a much larger quake and tsunami to the area. This is an area where two plates of the Earth's crust meet and grind against each other: one carrying the continental U.S. and the other hoisting the Pacific Ocean.

See more about regional quakes at Oregon, Coast Earthquake Updates - Live Data Oregon, Washington, California, Tsunamis. More photos of the region below:

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