Second quake swarm in days rattles California-Nevada border, seismologists say

A swarm of more than a dozen earthquakes reaching up to 3.8 magnitude rattled the California-Nevada border near Dyer, the U.S. Geological Survey reports.

The other quakes in the Wednesday, March 15, swarm ranged from 1.5 to 2.6 magnitude, according to the USGS.

The tremors followed an earlier swarm in the same area overnight Monday, March 13, which lasted 10 hours and included quakes up to 3.9 magnitude, McClatchy News reported.

The series of quakes, including the 3.8 temblor, began about 3 p.m., the USGS reported. More followed over the next several hours, with the most recent striking at 1:34 a.m. Thursday, March 16..

The half-mile deep 3.8-magnitude quake hit at 3:14 p.m. Wednesday, according to the USGS.

Only a handful of people reported feeling the remote tremors to the agency.

Dyer is a town of 200 people about 225 miles northwest of Las Vegas.

Magnitude measures the energy released at the source of the earthquake, the U.S. Geological Survey says. It replaces the old Richter scale.

Quakes between 2.5 and 5.4 magnitude are often felt but rarely cause much damage, according to Michigan Tech. Quakes below 2.5 magnitude are seldom felt by most people.

What to know about earthquakes

Earthquakes’ sudden, rapid shaking can cause fires, tsunamis, landslides or avalanches. They can happen anywhere, but they’re most common in Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon, Puerto Rico and Washington, according to the Department of Homeland Security.

If an earthquake strikes, it’s best to protect yourself right away. Here are tips from experts:

  • If you’re in a car: Pull over and stop. Set your parking brake.

  • If you’re in bed: Turn face-down and cover your head with a pillow.

  • If you’re outdoors: Stay away from buildings. Don’t go inside.

  • If you’re inside: Stay and don’t run outdoors. Stay away from doorways.

The best way to protect yourself during an earthquake is to drop, cover and hold on, officials say.

“Wherever you are, drop down to your hands and knees and hold onto something sturdy,” officials say. “If you’re using a wheelchair or walker with a seat, make sure your wheels are locked and remain seated until the shaking stops.”

Be sure to cover your head and neck with your arms, and crawl under a sturdy table if possible. If no shelter is available, crawl to an interior wall away from windows.

Once under a table, officials say you should hold on with one hand and be ready to move with it.

“There can be serious hazards after an earthquake, such as damage to the building, leaking gas and water lines, or downed power lines,” officials say. “Expect aftershocks to follow the main shock of an earthquake. Be ready to Drop, Cover, and Hold On if you feel an aftershock.”

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