3.8 magnitude quake reported across area

Thursday, June 17, 2021

There wasn’t a whole lotta shakin’ going on but west central Indiana experienced a mild earthquake Thursday afternoon.

At 3:18 p.m., a magnitude 3.8 earthquake occurred 1.9 miles west of Bloomingdale in Parke County, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said. Residents in Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky and Ohio reported shaking from the earthquake.

Putnam County residents, including Russ Evans, public information officer for the Putnam County Emergency Management Agency, were among those experiencing the brief jolt.

“Just felt the ground shake down here at Putnam Park,” Evans said from south of Mount Meridian in a text to the Banner Graphic. “Rockville may be the epicenter.”

The USGS said the quake occurred at a depth of about 1.9 miles (3.1 kilometers) beneath the earth’s surface. No injuries or damage were reported as a result of the event.

The Department of Geosciences at DePauw University also felt a rush.

“Hey @DePauw!” a 3:50 p.m. tweet began. “Did you feel today’s earthquake? We sure did! The seismograph located in Julian Science and Math Center recorded the event.”

The Rockville Police Department fielded several calls about the incident, issuing a report stating that “the loud boom and shaking was most likely an earthquake. Reports are coming from far and wide not just Parke County. We are now being advised it was an earthquake that was located north of Montezuma registered 3.8 on the Richter Scale.”

Residents across northern, central and southern portions of Indiana reported on the USGS website that they had felt the temblor. Residents in parts of Illinois and southern Michigan also reported experiencing the quake.

From Greencastle: “At my desk at home and the shelf vibrated along with my chair. Husband laying down and it shook his feet that were dangling.”

From Fillmore: “My cats scattered in a panic.”

From Christina Lamb at Brazil: “I felt it right away while I was FaceTiming with my daughter after she just had a spinal tap done at the hospital. My whole bed was shaking a lot. I immediately told her, ‘We just had an earthquake,’ and she said, ‘Mom, my hospital bed was shaking.’”

From Turkey Run State Park: “A group of us were walking a trail at the state park and were climbing the steps and I thought the shaking was just from all of us being on the steps at the same time. Neat moment!”

From Crawfordsville: “The house shook. I felt it inside. My husband felt it outside. Even the antenna on his truck was shaking. I heard rattling of dishes. It was brief, a matter of less than 30 seconds.”

From Heritage Lake: “Entire house shook. Loud boom before the shaking.”

From Rockville: “Felt like we were in a boat and it was shaking back and forth. I saw a whole house move vertically and horizontally.

From Cloverdale: “Heard an unidentifiable vibrating noise rather than a shaking.”

From Chicago (180 miles north of epicenter): “Just a little jolt, but it was enough that both my wife and I instantly recognized it as an earthquake. We’re on the top/fourth floor of a 100-year-old apartment building. No damage.”

The most recent earthquake centered in the Putnam County area occurred April 13, 2000 when a 3.6 magnitude quake rocked Greencastle at 10:54 p.m.

The epicenter was reported as 10 miles west of Greencastle in that incident. No injuries or damage were reported as a result of that event either.

“Indiana does get some earthquakes, but most occur down in the southern tip,” John Bellini of the National Earthquake Information Center in Golden, Colo., told the Associated Press. “The distance we’re seeing this earthquake being felt is pretty typical for one this size.”

An earthquake of Thursday’s size is on the smaller side, and typically won’t cause any major damage, he said.

“It might feel like a strong jolt and things might shake a little,” Bellini said. “But we don’t expect damage until we’re near the mid-4 level.”

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