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CNN BREAKING NEWS

6.5 Earthquake in California

Aired December 22, 2003 - 14:26   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN ANCHOR: Now back to Los Angeles, California, out of our bureau there. Charles Feldman working this story. We just got word, 6.4 earthquake. What can you tell us, Charles?
CHARLES FELDMAN, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, actually, the art quake occurred much more north of Los Angeles. However, we all felt it here, just moments ago at the CNN building in Hollywood. We felt a rumbling sensation that everybody thought they were getting sick with the flu, because they felt dizzy.

But it turns out it was, as you just said, a 6.5 earthquake, not in the Los Angeles area but north, actually north -- actually north of San Luis Obisbo, which, is of course, not to get too confusing, south of San Francisco but much more north than Los Angeles.

And the latest figure we have is 6.5 on the Richter scale, as I'm sure all you guys know. It changes by order of magnitude. So 5.5 is a lot stronger than a 4.5. And a 6.5 is a lot stronger than 5.5.

It is too early to tell to what extent if any there are any damages. I'm very familiar with that area along the coast. It's populated, of course, but not nearly as much as either the San Francisco Bay area or the Los Angeles basin.

But there are a number of very significant tourist destinations there, a lot of coastal communities, certainly a lot of the highway system that connects Northern California to Southern California. Some of it runs right along the coast.

So it is, again, too early for us to determine if there's been any damage to any of the highway structure. A 6.5 quake, depending on how deep it is, or how close it is to the surface, it will very on the kind of damage it could cause. If it's very been far down, the amount of damage is often minimal. If it's close to the surface, in relative terms, the damage could be, with a 6.5, fairly significant.

But right now we don't have any reports of that. So back to you.

PHILLIPS: All right, Charles Feldman working that story out of our L.A. bureau. Thank you. We'll check in with you of course as you get more information.

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