Earthquake rocks Southern California

4:47 p.m. ET, July 6, 2019

Here's what you need to know about the earthquakes that rocked California

An onlooker views newly ruptured ground after a 7.1 magnitude earthquake struck in the area on July 6, 2019 near Ridgecrest, California.
An onlooker views newly ruptured ground after a 7.1 magnitude earthquake struck in the area on July 6, 2019 near Ridgecrest, California. Mario Tama/Getty Images

A pair of large earthquakes hit Southern California over the course of two days.

On Thursday, a 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck the area. The next day, a 7.1 earthquake rocked Southern California on Friday night. Multiple fires broke out after it struck 11 miles northeast of the city of Ridgecrest.

Here's what else you need to know about these earthquakes:

  • Friday's earthquake was 11 times stronger than Thursday's 6.4-magnitude earthquake, which was also centered near Ridgecrest.
  • According to data from the earthquakes, the probability for another magnitude 7 quake within the next week is 3%, according to Caltech Seismologist Doctor Egill Hauksson. There is a 27% chance for a magnitude 6 within the next week.
  • The Red Cross said Saturday that 163 people are staying in shelters.
  • Governor Gavin Newsom will visit the area affected by the earthquakes. He also requested a federal emergency declaration from President Trump.
  • Kern County said there are no major structural reports of any damage, but a couple of mobile homes were knocked off their foundation a little bit.
  • The Ridgecrest police chief said Saturday that there are no reported casualties.
  • Since Friday night's 7.1-magnitude quake, there have been three quakes with magnitudes of 5 or greater. Those three all occurred within the first hour after the 7.1 quake; one was a 5.5 magnitude and there were two 5.4 quakes.
  • A state of emergency is declared in Ridgecrest and San Bernardino County and seismologists are expecting more aftershocks.
3:43 p.m. ET, July 6, 2019

Gov. Newsom is headed to Ridgecrest

California Gov. Gavin Newsom is at Mather Airport right now and will be headed to assess damage from the earthquakes and visit communities near Ridgecrest, the Governor’s Office announced in a tweet.

3:03 p.m. ET, July 6, 2019

Here is how earthquakes are measured

Context: The two quakes that hit California in two days had a 6.4 and 7.1 on the magnitude scale.

2:46 p.m. ET, July 6, 2019

California governor requests Trump make Presidential Emergency Declaration

California Gov. Gavin Newsom requested a presidential emergency declaration for immediate federal assistance on Saturday to support the communities in the state impacted by the earthquakes.

"I hereby request an Emergency Declaration for Direct Federal Assistance for California as a result of the July 4 and July 5 earthquakes that struck in Kern County and severely impacted Kern and San Bernardino counties, " Newsom wrote in a letter.

Read Newsom's letter to the President here.

2:38 p.m. ET, July 6, 2019

CalTech Seismologist: 3% chance for another 7 magnitude quake this week

According to data from the earthquakes, the probability for another magnitude 7 quake within the next week is 3%, Caltech Seismologist Doctor Egill Hauksson said.

Yesterday the probability was 6% so it has decreased, Hauksson said during a press conference Saturday.

There is a 27% chance for a magnitude 6 within the next week, according to Hauksson.

The sequence that generated the 7.1 earthquake is expected to generate around 30,000 quakes with a magnitude 1 and greater, Hauksson said.

Caltech is loading data onto the Caltech super computers and plans to use AI and machine learning to get information out of the data streams, Hauksson said.

 

2:33 p.m. ET, July 6, 2019

Ridgecrest mayor says there have been some thefts in the community

Ridgecrest Mayor Peggy Breeden said “we did last night have some bad people come into this community and try to take things away from some of our business owners.”

Ridgecrest Police Chief Jed McLaughlin also mentioned there were a couple of incidents of theft.

Sage Mart, a local convenience store, was broken into and a “very expensive” piece of equipment was stolen, McLaughlin said. A residence was also broken into.

2:33 p.m. ET, July 6, 2019

Red Cross: 163 people staying at shelter following Ridgecrest earthquake

Mimi Teller with the Red Cross spoke at the news conference about the Ridgecrest earthquake.

Teller said a shelter opened following the earthquake on Thursday and it will stay open as long as it is needed.

She said as of this morning they have 163 people staying there.

2:02 p.m. ET, July 6, 2019

No major reports of structure damage, Kern County official says

Kern County Battalion Chief Dionisio Mitchell said his team is taking in their normal amount of calls for a hazardous situation.

At a news conference moments ago, he said there are no major structural reports of any damage, but a couple of mobile homes were knocked off their foundation a little bit.

Mitchell says they are also responding to gas leaks. 

1:51 p.m. ET, July 6, 2019

Ridgecrest police chief: "By the grace of God, we’ve had no causalities"

California's Ridgecrest Police Chief Jed McLaughlin said there have been no causalities from the earthquake. 

“It’s hard for the world to know what we’ve been through because by the grace of God, we’ve had no causalities, and we’ve only had minor injuries,” McLaughlin said.

The chief added that the structures have remained upright although some have sustained major damage.

“They’re still standing, so that’s been amazing,” McLaughlin said.