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Old 02-20-2008, 07:19 PM   #1
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I've always been interested in earthquakes. Never been in one, but, I see that Baja California just had one.
Have you ever been in an earthquake? One over a magnitude 5?

I've been in a hurricane, that's about it. Power out, lots of wind, tons of rain, etc.

Never seen a tornado,either. Have you ever been near a tornado?
Seen one in person?

I'd love to hear personal accounts of earthquakes and/or tornadoes.

P.S. If you can, try to look at the lunar eclipse tonight.

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Old 02-20-2008, 07:26 PM   #2
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No dice on the lunar for me, it's been gloomy all day. I was in an earthquake in Tennessee a few years back (yep, TN is on a fault line). The epicenter was in Alabama somewhere and it followed the fault line up the Appalachians. Most bizarre thing I've ever experienced being a Florida gal myself. The whole house started shaking, you could hear the steel of our stairs going "tink, tink, tink". I thought it was cool, my husband kept telling me to shut up so he could hear if the house was going to collapse. The cat slept through it but was wildly paranoid a few days before, hiding under the bed, etc. She never does that, I'm guessing it was that animal instinct.
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Old 02-20-2008, 07:30 PM   #3
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Tornadoes- never hit personally, but heard them. In 2003, there was one just a few blocks from our house. It sounds like a big train. My husband told me it was the sirens that were losing power, but I knew from hearing them before. We had debris in our yard. It was really weird and very scary! That's the one that sticks out most in my mind, but there have been a few others very close to me.

I've been in quite a few huge thunderstorms. We had $1200 of damage done to our car with hail a couple of years ago. Not fun! We actually got hit twice that day. Ugh. First time we were home ready to leave for church but we stayed in so we wouldn't damage the van. The second time, I was out shopping. I'm so glad I wasn't on the road, but I was trapped in the center of Wal Mart for a while. Ugh.

No hurricanes or earthquakes for this midwest girl!

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Old 02-20-2008, 07:48 PM   #4
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I live in southern CA so I've been in lots of them. I don't remember exactly what each one sounded or felt like. They can feel like a sharp jolt and shaking or they can be more rolling. Both have noise some of which is the house I suppose, but you can hear rumbling. When we feel something now we look at a hanging lamp and see if it's moving. If it is, it's an earthquake. They don't scare me anymore. Sometimes DH sleeps through them. Were still waiting for "The Big One".

Let's see... There are always lots of little ones that you barely's the ones over 6 that you really remember. The bigger ones I've been in....

The first one I ever felt was the Sylmar/San Fernando quake in 1971 which was a 6.6. I lived about 75 miles south I think. That one, being the first, was really scary. I was living at home at the time (still in HS) and it felt like the whole house was moving. My strongest memory of that one was watching my brothers come down the stairway and they were laughing their heads off.

1992 - Lander's Quake June 28th 4:57 am registered 7.3
1992 - Big Bear Quake June 28th 8:05 am registered 6.4
Yep, the two above were on the same morning. I got up with the first one and sat in the doorway. When it was over we watched the TV. Eventually we went back to bed only to be awakened by the second one. Sat in doorway again and then got up for good. Lots of shaking with both of them.

1994 - Northridge Quake registered 6.7
Lots of shaking, but nothing that I remember other than some major damage near the epicenter. One of my uncles lives in Northridge and he had major damage.

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Old 02-20-2008, 07:53 PM   #5
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Yep and yep. I once was driving along I-20 in Louisiana at night and it was storming. My weather alert radio announced a twister running along I-20 in a certain parish that happened to be the one I was in at the time.

I started looking around and a flash of lightening showed me that the tornado was right across from my truck about 100 yards away and going the same direction I was. I hit the breaks and it suddenly crossed the interstate just about where I would have been had I not stopped.

I also once stood and watched one pass right behind my rig while it was parked in a truckstop in Texas.

I was once blind for a little over three months after being hit by lightening.

I was hoping to see the eclipse tonight but it's cloudy here in Florida so I probably won't get to see it.

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Old 02-20-2008, 07:57 PM   #6
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I'm a native Southern Californian and have been through quite a few tremblors. You get used to the smaller ones. As far as earthquakes over a 5.0 - I was in homeroom during the 1987 Whittier Earthquake - that was a 5.9. Funny thing was that we were supposed to have an earthquake drill that day. A friend of mine was looking over some of my notes for one of our classes and when the earthquake hit she threw my binder in the air and I could see my papers floating down from under my desk (we were always taught to climb under our desks in earthquakes). I was more upset about my papers being all messed up than the earthquake

I was in Northern California during the really big Northridge quake in 1994. I moved back down later that year though and felt some big aftershocks. My entire street was red tagged. I lived in one of only 2 buildings left standing. My aunt lived not far from the epicenter and I was really worried about her. I contacted Red Cross to find her because, of course, the phone lines were down and it took about 2 days before I got word that her and my uncle were ok.

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Old 02-20-2008, 08:07 PM   #7
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I forgot about the Landers Quake! I was in Northern California for that one as well (from 1990 to 1994). There was a big earthquake on the coast while I was in Northern California, but I can't rightly say that I "experienced" that one considering that where I was we just had a slight rumbling and a few car alarms go off. However, when I later moved to Santa Cruz for a couple of years I was told lots of stories about the "big quake" from their perspective. Supposedly it ripped up the main drag of Downtown Santa Cruz.

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Old 02-20-2008, 08:19 PM   #8
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Tornadoes have happened near here, been in some bad residual storms because of them. I find them earily interesting so while I won't be dumb and gawk outside at one, I'll try to watch bad weather as long as possible while it's safe to be outside. I'm kind of a dork like that.
In 1957 the worst tornado in local history hit our town, 6 kids from one family were killed, only one boy survived. It was written that Mr. Fujita used the data for developing his scale of tornado severity.
My only earthquake experience was a couple summers ago. My mom took me to Disneyland and the day we left, we felt a small one while waiting in the hotel lobby for our shuttle. Someone mentioned it and I could see a table lamp sort of shimmy a little. I thought is was cool, again I'm a dork. It basically felt like the vibration you feel when you are in your car at a railroad crossing when a train goes by. Eerie...
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Old 02-20-2008, 08:21 PM   #9
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I was in the Loma Prieta quake. The one that collapsed the Bay Bridge. I was at school at the time, calling my ride to pick me up and all of a sudden everything started moving. I had no idea what was going on, it felt almost like vertigo, until I saw the concrete sidewalk coming at me. It looked just like a rolling wave you would see at the ocean, only it was made out of concrete.

We have quakes here on a regular basis. Most of the time I don't notice them. There have been a few sharp ones that have woken me up from a sound sleep. But if it weren't for the fact that the ceiling fan is shaking, I might just think it was a gunshot that woke me (which isn't unusual, either).

There was one a month or so ago... around a 3 that was fairly strong. A rolling quake, epicentered about a mile from my house, it went on for about 10 seconds or so, long enough for me to get out of my desk chair and into the doorway. Usually they're over so quickly I just have time to brace my computer before it's over. It felt fairly similar to Loma Prieta, that rolling wave-like motion.

Usually anything under a 3.0 I don't feel. Having been raised here, we tend not to get terribly excited by them most of the time. We did have a really strong one a few months back, in the middle of the night. Not a rolling-wave one, but a long jolting-shaking one. DH was sleeping on the couch and I was in the bedroom. It woke both of us up so violently that we both went running through the house looking for the other one, adrenaline pumping wildly, both of us had the shakes. We just held onto eachother until we calmed down a bit. By that point of course we were both wide awake so we turned on the computer to find out the magnitude and were shocked to see it was under 4. It was just so local and so violent.

Baja is very active right now. They didn't have one quake. Just in the last week they've had... well, I stopped counting at 100, but it looks to be closer to 200.
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Old 02-20-2008, 09:10 PM   #10
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I am a northern California native and I hate earthquakes. Something about no notice and no control, I just hate them. I have been in a few of them, one I remember while I was working at a vet hospital back in 1992, we had a 7.6 that was centered south/southwest of Eureka, CA and it freaked me out. The vet had a black and white tiled floor and I was standing in the doorway watching it wave up and down like the ocean then I looked out the window at the former Safeway and saw the plate glass window also bending in and out. When I lived in southern CA, we had a few. Nothing major but I still hated them.
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