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M7.3 Quake Hits Baja, Kills One

Posted by feww on April 4, 2010

Serial No  1,535. If any posts are blocked in your country, please drop us a line.

California Seismicity Rising

The San Andreas Fault Zone [and extensions] has never before come so close to a violent major fragmentation.

Powerful earthquake measuring up to 7.3Mw strikes Baja California, Mexico, killing at least one

The quake located at 32.128°N, 115.303°W, about 60 km (38 miles) SSE (165°) from Mexicali, Baja California, Mexico, occurred on Sunday, April 04, 2010 at 03:40:40 PM (time at epicenter), and at a depth of about 10km.

As of 00:26UTC at least a dozen aftershocks have struck the area, the largest of which measured 5.8 and 5.7Mw respectively.  Additional shocks will follow.

Large swarms of minor shocks have been occurring in Guadalupe Victoria over the last month or so.

The earthquake shook building in San Diego, Phoenix, AZ, and Downtown Los Angeles, some 320km (~ 200 miles) northwest of the epicenter. Eye-witnesses described the shaking as “unbelievable” and “surreal” noting that some building towers were swaying for over a minute after the shock spread. The effect may have been due to the shallow depth of the shock, which occurred at an estimated depth of about 10km (+/- 2.5km).

Latest Casualty Report

“One person died when a house in Mexicali collapsed, Alfredo Escobedo, director of emergency services in Baja California state, Mexico, told Reuters. He said others were reported trapped in elevators, retaining walls had collapsed in some places and electricity was out in several parts of the state.” Reuters reported.

The quake also caused a two-story parking garage next to the Mexicali government headquarters to collapse, injuring several others, according to another report.

Local media in Mexicali report that about a dozen people are still trapped in their homes.

Tsunami Information

According to various tsunami centers, NO destructive tsunami was generated as a result of the quake.

Northern California

An earthquake measuring 4.0Mw  Northern California at 3:49 pm Sunday (local time). The epicenter was located about 25 miles north of Santa Rosa, a report said.

Reader’s Comment:

In response to a reader’s comment, a Fire-Earth Moderator likened  California region to a lake covered with a thin layer of ice, which was frequented by too many full-time ice skaters.


Location Map. Source: EMS. Click image to enlarge.

Summary of Earthquake Details (EMSC)

  • Magnitude:  Mw 7.0 Region: BAJA CALIFORNIA, MEXICO
  • Date time:  2010-04-04 at 22:40:47.7 UTC
  • Location: 32.38 N ; 115.04 W
  • Depth: 10 km
  • Distances (USGS)
    • 26 km (16 miles) SW (225°) from Guadalupe Victoria, Baja California, Mexico
    • 60 km (38 miles) SSE (165°) from Mexicali, Baja California, Mexico
    • 62 km (38 miles) SW (233°) from San Luis Río Colorado, Sonora, Mexico
    • 167 km (104 miles) ESE (105°) from Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico
    • 173 km (108 miles) ESE (106°) from Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico

10-degree Map Centered at 30°N,115°W


Earthquake Location Map. Source: USGS/EHP (earlier map with incorrect data)


Earthquake Location Map. Source: USGS/EHP (Later map with correction made). Color code changed by Fire-Earth Moderators from navy to fluorescent blue for improved visibility. Click image to enlarge.

Earthquake Details (USGS) – [Corrected]

  • Magnitude: 7.2
  • Date-Time:
    • Sunday, April 04, 2010 at 22:40:40 UTC
    • Sunday, April 04, 2010 at 03:40:40 PM at epicenter
  • Location: 32.128°N, 115.303°W
  • Depth: 10 km (6.2 miles) (poorly constrained)
  • Region: BAJA CALIFORNIA, MEXICO
  • Distances:
    • 26 km (16 miles) SW (225°) from Guadalupe Victoria, Baja California, Mexico
    • 60 km (38 miles) SSE (165°) from Mexicali, Baja California, Mexico
    • 62 km (38 miles) SW (233°) from San Luis Río Colorado, Sonora, Mexico
    • 167 km (104 miles) ESE (105°) from Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico
  • Location Uncertainty: horizontal +/- 2.4 km (1.5 miles); depth +/- 31.6 km (19.6 miles)
  • Parameters Nph= 13, Dmin=70 km, Rmss=0.28 sec, Gp=259°, M-type=regional moment magnitude (Mw), Version=2
  • Source:   California Integrated Seismic Net –  USGS Caltech CGS UCB UCSD UNR
  • Event ID: ci14607652

Location Map


Source: USGS/EHP. Click image to enlarge.

Seismic Hazard Map


ShakeMap (USGS)


Population Exposure (USGS)


Related Links:

FEWW Links:

  • Earthquakes

One Response to “M7.3 Quake Hits Baja, Kills One”

  1. feww said

    UPDATE
    According to latest reports from Mexicali, at least 2 people have been killed and more than a 100 others injured as a result of the quake.

    The first victim died after a building collapsed on him, and a second victim was struck by a car as he ran onto the road escaping a collapsing building.

    The death toll could rise further as more news from rural communities in the immediate vicinity of the epicenter becomes available.

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