LOS ANGELES (AP) – The Latest on Southern California’s strongest earthquake in 20 years (all times local):
Authorities are now reporting injuries and damage from a big earthquake that was felt throughout Southern California and into Las Vegas and even Mexico.
The quake that hit at 8:19 p.m. was given a preliminary magnitude of 6.9 to 7.1, but the measurements were still being calculated.
It followed Thursday’s 6.4-mangitude quake that at the time was the largest Southern California quake in 20 years. Both were centered near Ridgecrest in the Mojave Desert.
Kern County fire officials reported “multiple injuries and multiple fires” without providing details. San Bernardino County firefighters reported cracked buildings and a minor injury.
An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.9 has jolted Southern California, but there are no immediate reports of damage or injuries.
The U.S. Geological Survey says the quake hit at 8:19 p.m. Friday and was centered 11 miles from Ridgecrest, where a magnitude 6.4 quake struck on Thursday. The agency initially said the earthquake had a magnitude of 7.1.
The quake was felt downtown as a rolling motion that seemed to last at least a half-minute. It was felt as far away as Las Vegas, and the USGS says it also was felt in Mexico.
If the preliminary magnitude is correct, it would be the largest Southern California quake in 20 years.
Seismologists say there have been 1,700 aftershocks in the wake of the strongest earthquake to hit Southern California in 20 years but the chances of another large temblor are diminishing.
A magnitude 5.4 quake at 4:07 a.m. Friday is so far the strongest aftershock of Thursday’s 6.4 quake, which struck in the Mojave Desert near the town of Ridgecrest.
Zachary Ross of the California Institute of Technology says the number of aftershocks might be slightly higher than average. He also says a quake of that size could continue producing aftershocks for years.
The quake caused some damage to buildings and roads in and around Ridgecrest.
However, seismologists say it’s unlikely the quake will affect any fault lines away from the immediate area, such as the mighty San Andreas.