Tremors felt in Carson City

Max Faylor, 81, was among many Carson City residents left a little shaken after an earthquake on Friday afternoon.

"It was a real shocker," he said. "I haven't felt one like that in a long, long time. It felt like somebody took the whole house and shook it a few shakes and quit. It was a tough one."

The quake, which hit at 1:19 p.m., originated 90 miles northwest of Carson City in the Grizzly Ridge Area and measured 5.5 on the Richter scale. No injuries were reported.

Charles Watson, president and chief geologist of Seismo-Watch, said the 5.5 magnitude was not strong enough to cause much trouble.

"It's capable of knocking items from tables and shelves and hanging plants to fling," he said. "But it's probably not strong enough to cause any major damage."

Sonny Warrell, of Carson City, nearly lost his computer to the quake.

"I was sleeping and it woke me up," Warrell said. "I thought I was dreaming. My computer about half fell off the table it's on."

Carson City sheriff's dispatchers received many calls from concerned residents, but no damage was reported.

Faylor, who has lived in Carson City for 38 years, has felt other earthquakes in the area.

"We've had a few, but I don't remember another like that one," he said. "We didn't have any damage, but it's scary, really scary."

Watson said similar quakes have been felt in the area, including one of a 4.1 magnitude and another of a 4.8 magnitude in 1997 and one that measured 4.1 in 1995.

Faylor is no stranger to earthquakes. He was in Los Angeles in the early 1930s when a large earthquake occurred.

"I was just 11 or 12," he said. "It was a big one. That was really scary."

Friday's earthquake was felt in a wide area including Sacramento, Redding, Quincy, Portola, Reno and Truckee.

Leslie Tigan, the Portola city clerk, said the quake rattled the city hall but did no damage.

''It was like nothing I have ever felt before, but I am from southern New Jersey,'' she said.

Betty Jeck, manager of the Eastern Plumas Chamber of Commerce on the outskirts of Portola, called it ''a good shaker.''

''We just had a little bitty aftershock,'' she added.

In earthquake measurement, every increase of one number, say from 5.5 to 6.5, means that the quakes magnitude is 10 times as great. A quake of magnitude 5 can cause considerable damage; a quake of magnitude 6 can cause severe damage.


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