California on seismic alert: Two shallow M4.6 and M4.4 earthquakes hit off Eureka within seconds – Precursors of the Big One?

Today morning, two shallow earthquakes (M4.6 and M4.4) hit off the coast of northern California at a depth of 8km and 19km, respectively.

M4.6 and M4.4 earthquakes hit off northern California on April 2 2021
M4.6 and M4.4 earthquakes hit off northern California on April 2, 2021. Map via USGS

The pair of quakes struck 17 seconds apart of each other (8:21:18 and 8:21:35 AM UTC).

M4.6 earthquake 153 km W of Shelter Cove, California
M4.6 earthquake 153 km W of Shelter Cove, California on April 2, 2021 at 08:21:18 (UTC). USGS

Some weak or light shaking was probably felt in the Eureka and Fortuna areas.

M4.4 earthquake 27km W of Petrolia, CA april 2 2021
M4.4 earthquake 27km W of Petrolia, CA on April 2, 2021 at 08:21:35 (UTC). USGS

The third M2.5 quake in the area hit 1 hour after the first two…

Meanwhile, I am sure geologists closely monitor the seismicity along the west coast…

These earthquakes could indeed be precursors of the next Cascadia Megathrust Earthquake or California Big One…

Indeed, the tremors occurred near the Mendecino Triple Junction, an area where the Cascadia Subduction Zone meets with the San Andreas Fault.

Moreover, if you look at the map from PSNS below, additional quakes rattled the Cascadia Subduction Zone off the Oregonian coast and on Victoria Island in Canada, as well.

earthquake pacific northwest, M4.4 and M4.6 earthquake eureka, strong earthquake northern california, quake off california coast pril 2 2021
More than 442 earthquakes hit the Pacific Northwest on April 1, 2021. Map via PNSN

An earthquake will destroy a sizable portion of the coastal Northwest.

The question isn’t if but when. And keep in mind: The next full-margin rupture of the Cascadia subduction zone will spell the worst natural disaster in the history of the continent.

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