Small Quake Off Oregon Coast, Depoe Bay; No Tsunami Alert

Published 10/06/2015 at 7:02 PM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff


(Depoe Bay, Oregon) – A small earthquake off the Oregon coast shook the ocean floor about 5:29 p.m. this evening, clocking in at a magnitude 3.9. No tsunami alert has been issued and it doesn't appear it was even felt anywhere onshore.

The quake occurred 235 miles off Depoe Bay, and was centered about six miles below the ocean floor.

Calls around the Depoe Bay and central Oregon coast area revealed no one appears to have felt anything. A 3.9 at six miles below the surface is considered fairly deep and insignificant.

You can keep up with Pacific ocean earthquakes in the Northwest and west coast with the Live Earthquake, Tsunami Updates from Oregon Coast, Washington. B.C., California, Alaska section.

Another very tiny earthquake – a magnitude .6 – was recorded 20 miles east of Mount Hood earlier today as well.

The quake off Depoe Bay is part of a stretch of seismic faults lurking about 300 miles off the central coast at the edge of the Juan de Fuca plate. It's part of the hot zone called the Cascadia Subduction Zone, where the Juan de Fuca plate is slowly separating from the Pacific Plate, causing small quakes to happen with regularity.

One day, it is expected to unleash a massive earthquake along the Oregon coast and inland. But in the meantime, these smaller rattlings are just par for the course for the area and are not a sign of something ominous. These quake clusters happen occasionally and they are harmless.

The USGS said it takes a 7.0 quake to create a tsunami.

Back in June, at least nine shallow quakes shook about 300 miles west of Newport in one day. These were stronger, clocking in between 5.9 down to a 4.2 magnitude.

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