The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) reported a strong 6.0-magnitude earthquake that rocked the San Francisco Bay area early Sunday morning (August 24, 2014). It was centered 6 kilometers (4 miles) northwest of the Napa County town of American Canyon. According to a CBSlocal new outlet, the earthquake caused:
… widespread power outages in Napa and Sonoma, causing moderate damage across the region, significantly damaging historic buildings in Downtown Napa, and forcing the [California Highway Patrol] to close ramps on a major highway.
In Napa, at least 120 people were injured and treated in the emergency room of Queen of the Valley Hospital, said Hospital president Walt Mickens. Six patients sustained critical injures, including a young child, Mickens said.
USGS said that, immediately after the main 6.0-magnitude earthquake, the probability of strong and possibly damaging aftershocks in the next 7 days is approximately 54%. At least 36 small aftershocks were recorded immediately following the earthquake.
USGS further said that, most likely, the mains earthquake Sunday morning would be the largest in the sequence. However, there is a small chance (approximately 5-10%) of an earthquake equal to or larger than the mainshock within 7 days of the main quake.
Details of the quake follow:
2014-08-24 10:20:44 UTC
2014-08-24 03:20:44 UTC-07:00 at epicenter
6km (4mi) NW of American Canyon, California
9km (6mi) SSW of Napa, California
13km (8mi) NNW of Vallejo, California
14km (9mi) SE of Sonoma, California
82km (51mi) WSW of Sacramento, California
Bottom line: Strong earthquake struck San Francisco Bay area early on August 24, 2014. Power outages, moderate damage across region, closed highways, serious injuries, no deaths.
Deborah Byrd created the EarthSky radio series in 1991 and EarthSky.org in 1994. Today, she serves as Editor-in-Chief of this website. She has won a galaxy of awards from the broadcasting and science communities, including having an asteroid named 3505 Byrd in her honor. A science communicator and educator since 1976, Byrd believes in science as a force for good in the world and a vital tool for the 21st century. "Being an EarthSky editor is like hosting a big global party for cool nature-lovers," she says.