LOS ANGELES: A shallow 5.1-magnitude earthquake rocked the Los Angeles area on Friday causing power cuts, gas leaks and bursting water mains, and stopping rides at Disneyland.
While no injuries were reported, objects fell from shelves and furniture toppled over, according to photos posted on social media, while TV pictures showed a car flipped over by a rockslide.
The quake, which hit at 9:10pm (0410 GMT yesterday), was the biggest in the Los Angeles area for six years, since a 5.5-magnitude earthquake struck nearby Chino Hills in 2008. Friday’s quake came after one measuring 4.4 earlier this month.
The quake’s epicentre was near La Habra, about 35km southeast of downtown Los Angeles, and could be felt across the LA metropolitan area, including in Hollywood. Disneyland shut down rides as a precaution, according to NBC4 television. A Disneyland spokesman did not respond to a request for comment.
Car alarms were reported to have been set off in some areas by the five-mile-deep quake, which was initially registered as 5.3 magnitude but later revised down. Hannah Hirzel, 17, who lives four miles from the epicenter, said: “I was home alone and I ran out of the house... I was sitting where my bookshelf fell, but I ran too quick.”
The quake, which lasted up to half a minute, was preceded and followed by a number of smaller ones. The LA County Fire Department received reports of gas leaks and scattered damage, said spokesman Ed Pickett, while police in Fullerton, about fives miles from La Habra, reported several water main breaks, spokesman Jeff Stuart told KCAL 9 television.
A rock slide took place in Carbon Canyon, about six miles from La Habra. Video showed a white car flipped over on its roof, apparently by the rock fall. The driver escaped with no major injuries, according to CBS 2 television. At Dodger Stadium, the quake briefly interrupted the baseball game between the LA Dodgers and the Angels.
A power outage attributed to the quake cut electricity supplies to nearly 2,000 customers in the La Mirada area, near La Habra, said a spokeswoman for the Southern California Edison utility company.