A 3.9-magnitude tremor has struck the San Francisco Bay Area in California, setting off a Twitterstorm as residents rushed to social media to report the relatively minor ripple that appeared to cause no damage.
The quake shook California’s Alameda County on Monday evening. According to the US Geological Survey (USGS), the epicenter was located some 3.4 km (2.1 mi) north of San Lorenzo, a community in the East Bay with a population of about 26,000 people.
Although minor, the sudden tremor sent Twitter into overdrive, with #earthquake shooting up to the top of regional Twitter trends.
The quake was initially reported as a 4.2-magnitude one, shortly before being downgraded to a 3.9-magnitude jolt. Many netizens rushed to share their firsthand encounters with the phenomenon.
“Perfectly jiggly. Good buildup. Enough shake for excitement, not enough for fear. Light audible rumble. Exquisite work,” one commenter tweeted.
Another apparent Bay Area resident posted a video of the shaking, which appeared to have lasted several seconds.
I somehow managed to get the earthquake on camera just bay area things pic.twitter.com/XsXb7tdqdD
— niaz (@nazocado) June 29, 2021
I'm on the 4th story of an apartment complex in Walnut Creek and definitely felt that one.#earthquake
— Brian O'Sullivan (@osullivanauthor) June 29, 2021
The quake caused a brief delay in San Francisco’s Bay Area Rapid Transit service. The company promised to resume regular traffic as soon as additional checks and inspections are carried out.
When our earthquake detection system is triggered, trains automatically slow down. Then staff do a variety of checks and inspections. This causes a brief delay before we resume regular service.
The faults are alive and we have systems in place to respond. https://t.co/tiC3lvDd7a
— SFBART (@SFBART) June 29, 2021
While somewhat uneventful, the tremor caused much commotion on Twitter, with memes pouring in showing panicked Californians fleeing the quake.
People in California trying to escape the earthquakes.
— In My Mind (@MeAloneInMyMind) June 29, 2021
— K. Lewis Muzik (@klewismuzik) June 29, 2021
— Toki (@dongjintoki) June 29, 2021
Others, however, were less than excited, pleading with those enthralled by the occasion to “just chill.”
“Earthquake lasts 6-8 seconds, #earthquake Twitter lasts ~20 minutes. Why is it so thrilling and needed to see everyone else going ‘earthquake!’?” one commenter asked.
— Roxanne "Abolish the Filibuster" Dungereaux (@RoseredEmpress) June 29, 2021
Earthquake lasts 6-8 seconds, #earthquake Twitter lasts ~20 minutes. Why is it so thrilling and needed to see everyone else going "earthquake!!!"?
I look initially to confirm it was what I thought it was, and not a car running into the other side of my building or something.
— Breanne Boland (@breanneboland) June 29, 2021
— ⭐️wynter mitchell rohrbaugh⭐️ (@wyntermitchell) June 29, 2021
While some may argue that a perceived threat from the tremor was overhyped, there are growing concerns about at least one potentially devastating major quake rattling the San Francisco Bay region before 2043. According to a USGS fact sheet first published in 2014, there is a 72% probability that one or more 6.7-magnitude quakes strike the area within the next 20 years.
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