Seismo-Watch

Special Earthquake Report No: 99-020

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Preliminary Magnitude:

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NORTHERN BAJA CALIFORNIA, MEXICO

4.9 Ml (SCSN)

n/a ( -- )

99/09/10
13:40:05
32.47N
115.31W
6.0 km (Fixed)
B

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An earthquake registering a preliminary magnitude of ML 4.9 (SCSN) was detected 13:40:05 UTC (6:40 a.m. PDT), September 10, in Northern Baja California, Mexico (Location Map). The focal depth was fixed at a depth of 6 km beneath of the surface for quick processing and we do not have a fault plane solution for this event as of yet.
 
The quake was centered about 16 miles southeast of Mexicali and about 6 miles north of the Cerro Prieto volcano between the northern extent of the Cerro Prieto Fault and the southern portion of the Imperial Fault. There have been no significant aftershocks at this time.
 
The earthquake was not part of the ongoing swarm in the Colorado delta region of Sonora, Mexico, and was centered a few miles north of the Cerro Prieto geothermal power plant.
 
Preliminary reports indicate the quake was widely felt along the California - Mexico border, jarring many people from sleep. At El Centro, the quake was felt as a quick, sharp jolt that lasted less than a few seconds, but shook the homes rather strongly. Hanging plants swung, glassware rattled, and pictures on walls were knocked askew. There have been no reports of items toppling from tables and shelves.
 
This morning's event was the 14th M4+ quake to occur in Southern California and northern Baja/Sonora, Mexico, this year. Six of those events have occurred within 20 miles of the California-Mexican border. The last M5+ earthquake to happen in this region was the M5.2 and M5.0 Coso Range double quake sequence in March 1998. (Recent analysis reevaluated the May 14 Joshua Tree earthquake at M4.9). The last M6+ earthquake in Southern California was the Northridge M6.7 earthquake on January 17, 1994 ­ 5-1/2 years ago.
 

Update: 9:00 a.m., September 10, 1999.

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Subtract 8 hours from Greenwich Mean Time to obtain PST or 5 hours for EDT
Location Quality: A (good), B (fair), C (poor), D (bad)
Magnitude: Ml (local or Richter magnitude), Lg (mblg), Md (duration), Mb (body wave), Ms (surface wave), Mw (moment)

Standard Sources Include:
U.S. Geological Survey, National Earthquake Information Center, Golden, CO (NEIC)
Harvard Geophysical Observatory, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA (HRV)
U.S. Geological Survey, Northern California Seismic Network (NCSN)
University of California, Berkeley, Seismological Laboratory (UCBSL)
Southern California Seismic Network (USGS & Caltech), Pasadena, California (SCSN)
California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California (Caltech)
various wire reports and/or personal communications

All data are preliminary and subject to change.
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