Magnitude-3.2 earthquake hits San Juan Islands, shakes Greater Victoria

Residents throughout the capital region reported rumblings and barking dogs when a magnitude-3.2 earthquake struck Saturday night in Washington state’s San Juan Islands. The quake hit about 20 kilometres from Sidney and 25 kilometres from Victoria.

The U.S. Geological Survey said the temblor happened at 10:57 p.m. at a depth of 14 kilometres. It initially reported the magnitude of the quake at 2.9.

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Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps felt it. Others also took to Twitter unsure of what they felt and wanting to verify it was a quake.

CHEK News reporter Isabelle Raghem wrote: “Anyone else in #yyj feel a quake or was that just in my head?” The reporter quickly confirmed it was indeed a quake.

The European Mediterranean Seismological Centre solicits comments about quakes around the world.

On its website, a Sidney resident, 20 kilometres from the epicentre, wrote: “First it felt like something hit the house and then the window rattled.”

Another Sidney resident wrote: “It felt like a single thud - like something heavy had fallen somewhere else in the house.”

Another Sidney resident described it as “a mini explosion,” while a third thought a plane had crashed at the airport. “Our dog was up and wanted to go outside - very upset”. Another Sidney resident thought a boat on the water exploded: “Like an explosion on the A-Team TV show or something.”

A resident of North Saanich, 21 kilometres from the epicentre: “Heard it more than felt it.”

A Broadmead resident was awakened from a happy slumber on the couch: “I wasn’t sure if it was thunder or a quake, but it got my attention.”

In Victoria, 25 kilometres from the epicentre, a resident reported the headboard rumbling and walls shaking, and reported that it sounded like a low-flying plane or very large truck, while another Victoria resident said it was the “most alarming shaking I’ve felt in the 22 years since I’ve lived here.”

Passing trucks and crashing vehicles were popular theories for people not immediately sure of what was going on Saturday night.

Others reported it was over quickly but noted rumbling, rattling, rolling, vibrations, subtle tremors and items on shelves moving while others slept through it or didn’t detect it because, as one Colwood man said, his house is on a bed of rock.
 

Earthquakes Canada measured it at magnitude 2.7 and a depth of 10 kilometres.

Dozens of people reported feeling the shaking; most described it as "weak" or "light."

To make your own report, go to Earthquakes Canada or the USGS.

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