NewsMontana and Regional News

Actions

Another small earthquake rattles Manhattan residents

Seismologists say the quake came in at around magnitude 3.1
Posted: 10:49 AM, Aug 10, 2019
Updated: 2019-08-10 12:49:39-04

BOZEMAN — The shaking and rumbling felt by people in and around Manhattan, about 22 miles northwet of Bozeman, has refused to quit just yet.

On Thursday night, people living in the area felt yet another small earthquake.

Seismologists say the quake came in at around magnitude 3.1 - not the strongest, but it marks the 23rd quake there since the beginning of the month.

This also comes after Sunday’s magnitude 4.1, which seismologists say was the largest earthquake in Manhattan history, something that makes a few people nervous.

“It was very scary and most people felt that way," says Wilma Vanderby, who lives in Manhattan. "It’s like, you know, what’s going to happen next? It just shook and it just creaked and cracked and I really felt the rumbling.”

Seismologists say there isn’t anything to worry about. There is no knowing if and when there will be more but experts say swarms like this one are normal for the area.

There have been no reports of injuries or serious damage.

According to Montana Tech seismologist Mike Stickney, they happen in the Treasure State more often than you might think.

“Montana sees earthquakes on a frequent basis because we are along something called the Intermountain seismic belt,” Stickney said.

This belt extends from northwest Montana through Yellowstone into southwest Montana, and small quakes are common within its reach.

August 3: Several small earthquakes reported near Manhattan


BACKGROUND: According to the USGS, Montana is one of the most seismically-active states in the country, although the vast majority of recorded earthquakes are very small, causing no damage and rarely noticed by people.

Montana is located within the Intermountain Seismic Belt, an active earthquake region stretching along the Rocky Mountains. It is the fourth-most seismically active state, although the vast majority of earthquakes in Montana are too small to be felt.

But there are exceptions. About 90 years ago, a large earthquake hit southwest Montana. The quake damaged a school house in Three Forks, twisted railroad tracks along the Missouri River, and damaged a jail in White Sulphur Springs.

Ten years after that another big quake hit Helena, killing two people and causing millions of dollars in damage. It damaged churches, collapsed walls right out of homes, and hit commercial and government buildings as well.