Fla., Ga., Ala. Shaken But Not Damaged By Gulf of Mexico Earthquake

September 11, 2006

The United States Geological Survey, National Earthquake Information Center, reported that a strong earthquake occurred about 250 miles (405 km) south-southwest of Apalachicola, Florida at 10:56 am EDT, Sept. 10 2006.

This earthquake was felt in parts of Florida, Georgia and Alabama. No reports of damage or casualties have been received at this time.

The quake was centered beneath the Gulf of Mexico, well distant from the nearest active plate boundary. Such “midplate” earthquakes are much less common than earthquakes occurring on faults near plate boundaries, and most probably represent the release of long-term tectonic stresses that ultimately originate from forces applied at the plate boundary, according to the geologists.

This is the largest of more than a dozen shocks that have been instrumentally recorded from the eastern Gulf of Mexico in the past three decades, and it is the most widely felt. The most recent significant earthquake in the region occurred on February 10th, 2006 and had a magnitude of 5.2. We have not associated this earthquake with a specific causative fault.

Earthquakes of this magnitude are unlikely to generate destructive tsunami. No significant tsunami was generated by this earthquake.

Source: United States Geological Survey, National Earthquake Information Center

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