Rare Magnitude 5.1 Earthquake Strikes Ojai, Ventura County Amidst Tropical Storm Hilary

OJAI, Calif. (KABC) — Ventura County experienced a notable seismic event on Sunday afternoon when a magnitude 5.1 earthquake shook the region. This geological occurrence coincided with the anticipation of Hurricane Hilary’s impact on much of Southern California.

The seismic activity originated at approximately 2:41 p.m. with its epicenter located about four miles southeast of Ojai, as reported by the US Geological Survey (USGS). Subsequent to the main quake, no fewer than six aftershocks have been recorded, with a magnitude surpassing 3.0.

Lucy Jones, a prominent authority on earthquakes, voiced her perspective, stating, “Determining whether this event had the potential to yield notable ground displacement is a subject of speculation.” The seismic specialist highlighted the absence of immediate accounts of harm or damage. However, individuals utilizing social media platforms attested to feeling the tremors, even extending to areas such as the Inland Empire and the broader expanse of Los Angeles.

Jones underscored the educational value of every seismic incident, elaborating, “Frequent minor quakes sometimes leave us with diminishing insights as their patterns become familiar. What sets this occurrence apart is its rare magnitude 5 occurrence at this precise site, which hasn’t been observed since 1932. Such phenomena are atypical within the confines of the Ventura basin.”

This seismic event unfolded concurrently with the presence of Tropical Storm Hilary, prompting questions about a potential connection between the two. Jones, however, firmly dismissed any link between the earthquake and the prevailing extreme weather conditions. Presently, statistical assessments predict a mere 5 percent likelihood of a more sizable seismic event materializing.


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