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Magnitude 4.2 earthquake centered near San Fernando rattles Greater L.A.

People walk along the Mission City Train in San Fernando, where a magnitude 4.2 earthquake struck early Thursday.
(Al Seib/Los Angeles Times)

A series of earthquakes rattled the Los Angeles area Thursday morning.

The largest, a magnitude 4.2 quake, was reported at 4:29 a.m. and centered near San Fernando, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. It was felt across the L.A. Basin and into Orange County, but no damage was reported.

A number of smaller quakes followed throughout the early morning — including a magnitude 3.3 earthquake at 4:38 a.m. and a magnitude 3.8 temblor at 6:48 a.m., both in San Fernando, according to the USGS.

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Ground and air surveys from the Los Angeles Fire Department found no major infrastructure damage, and “there has been no loss of life or serious injury that we can directly attribute” to the larger quake, officials wrote in an incident update shortly before 5:30 a.m.

The Los Angeles Police Department’s 911 and communications systems were not affected by the temblor, and all operations were normal as of about 5 a.m., authorities said.

“A reminder, when an earthquake does happen, please don’t call 911 unless you have an emergency,” the LAPD wrote on Twitter.

In the past 10 days, there have been two earthquakes of magnitude 3.0 or greater centered nearby.

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An average of five earthquakes with magnitudes between 3.0 and 4.0 occur per year in the Greater Los Angeles area, according to a recent three year data sample.

The initial earthquake occurred at a depth of 4.9 miles. The magnitude 3.3 quake occurred at a depth of 5.8 miles, according to the USGS.

Renowned seismologist Lucy Jones characterized the early morning activity as “garden variety California quakes.”

“What does it mean? It means you live in California,” she wrote on Twitter.

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Did you feel these earthquakes? Consider reporting what you felt to the USGS.

Find out what to do before, and during, an earthquake near you by reading our five-step earthquake preparedness guide.


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