x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Earthquake rattles southern California

The California-Mexico border region has been rocked by a magnitude-5.7 quake.

The California-Mexico border region was rocked by a magnitude-5.7 quake, rattling nerves from San Diego north to Orange County and Los Angeles. The US Geological Survey said the quake was centred 8 kilometres southeast of Ocotillo in Imperial County, about 137km east of San Diego. It struck on Monday at about 9.26pm (4.26am GMT) and has been followed by dozens of aftershocks. The San Diego County Office of Emergency Services made a round of calls to all cities in the county and found no reports of significant damage. Louis Fuentes, the chairman of the Imperial County board of supervisors, said he had no immediate reports of damage.

"As soon as it hit, my wife said, 'Grab the baby.' My daughter ran out to the back yard," said Mr Fuentes, who was in his garage in Calexico, about 50km east of the epicentre. "It thumped really hard." The quake was felt as a gentle rolling motion in the Los Angeles area and caused a momentary pause at the Toronto Blue Jays-San Diego Padres baseball game in San Diego. The quake follows a series of temblors that struck Southern California over the weekend, including a pair of moderate earthquakes that rattled a desert area east of San Diego. Residents in downtown San Diego could feel the ground rumbling during at least one of the Saturday quakes.

At least 20 aftershocks were recorded within 30 minutes of the earthquake, with the largest measuring at magnitude-4.1. More than 1,000 people reported feeling the shaking, according to online citizen reports compiled by the USGS. The strongest shaking was felt in San Diego County. *AP