6.4-magnitude quake rattles Nevada from top down
More than 150 aftershocks were recorded on Friday after a 6.4-magnitude earthquake closed the main route between Carson City and Las Vegas for six hours.
Highway 95 west of Tonopah reopened 2 p.m. after workers patched a crack caused by the earthquake north of Coaldale Junction.
Gov. Steve Sisolak opened his 3 p.m. press conference with news the highway had been repaired.
“It was definitely felt in Carson City as the lights in my residence were swinging this morning,” he said. “It definitely made an impact.”
According to the Nevada Department of Transportation, workers filled the largest damage along a 40-foot stretch of highway with a 9-foot-wide asphalt patch to reopen the highway.
The initial earthquake was reported 4:03 a.m. Friday in the Monte Christo Range west of Tonopah and reportedly shook Nevadans awake as far away as Las Vegas.
Dozens of Western Nevada residents reported being awakened by the earthquake including some Holbrook Junction, Stateline, Johnson Lane and Gardnerville.
The earthquake was three miles deep. There were no reports of damage.
More than 8,000 people posted that they felt the earthquake throughout Nevada, California and Utah. The quake was followed by six aftershocks larger than magnitude 4.5 in the next hour, including a 5.1 shaker about 23 minutes after the main quake, according to the seismological lab.
Aftershocks were recorded by the seismology lab through the day, with a half-dozen bigger than 3.0 striking 4-5 p.m.
“This area is an active seismic region,” UNR spokesman Mike Wolterbeek said Friday morning. “This earthquake is the largest in the region since a 1934 magnitude 6.5 earthquake approximately 24 miles to the northwest and a 1932 magnitude 6.8 earthquake approximately 30 miles to the north. The area experienced a magnitude 5.1 earthquake in 2013. About two dozen earthquakes in the magnitude 5 range have occurred within 65 miles of this event over the past 50 years, mostly to the west and south.”
The earthquake occurred in the Walker Lane, a 60-mile wide active fault zone, which roughly parallels the Nevada-California border.
Geologists believe the Walker Lane takes some of the pressure from the San Andreas Fault in California.
This is the third swarm of large earthquakes along the Lane in three months. On March 20, a 4.5 magnitude earthquake on the south end of Prison Hill in Carson City could be felt across Carson Valley. Valley residents also reported feeling a 5.26 earthquake just east of Mono Lake on April 11.