Box Elder County experiences multiple earthquakes

May 7, 2024, 6:49 PM | Updated: 6:57 pm

BOX ELDER COUNTY — Have you felt shaking in Box Elder County? In the past three days, 75 small earthquakes have been measured by University of Utah Seismograph Stations southwest of Tremonton.

“This is what we call an energetic earthquake sequence, this is a lot of earthquakes,” Katherine Whidden, a Research Seismologist at the University of Utah, said.

The cluster of earthquakes in Box Elder County started Saturday around 2:30 pm, and they’ve shaken the earth in that area consistently ever since. The largest quake was a 4.4 magnitude about 16 miles southwest of Tremonton in an unpopulated area. However, three others above a 3.0 have been measured in the area as well.

“I know that for the 4.4 magnitude earthquake we had 200 reports on ‘Did You Feel it?’,” Whidden said, speaking about the earthquake reporting tool on the United States Geological Survey’s website.

Whidden says the recent earthquakes in Box Elder County are happening in an area that was active in the 80’s and 90’s. They are just a valley over from where Utah’s largest recorded earthquake occurred in 1934, which was a 6.6 magnitude.

She said these earthquakes are directly related to the Wasatch fault system and will be closely monitored and studied to see if they can tell us anything about the fault.

“We live in a seismically active area, and this is the kind of thing that happens. There is some stress in the crust, and it’s being relieved by these earthquakes,” Whidden said.

When asked if this is a sign of a bigger earthquake coming soon, Whidden said it’s difficult to know.

“Anytime there is an earthquake there is a potential for a larger one later, about a one in 20 chance there could be a larger one later,” Whidden said. “So I won’t say that it can’t happen, but usually it doesn’t happen.”

Whidden said it’s important to make the community aware of these smaller earthquakes so they can take the steps necessary to prepare for a bigger one. She recommends three days of food, water, and medication.

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Box Elder County experiences multiple earthquakes