Biggest earthquake in years hit Southern California on America’s Independence day (Photos)

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The largest earthquake in over twenty years hit Southern California on Thursday morning July 4, shaking communities from Las Vegas to Long Beach and ending a quiet period in the state’s seismic history.

The magnitude 6.4 temblor started around 10.33am over 125 miles northeast of Los Angeles in the remote Searles Valley area near where Inyo, San Bernardino and Kern counties meet.

Charles Hawkins, left hugs his mother Elizabeth at his Ridgcrest area mobile home. His wife was injured in the earthquake and his mobile home was damaged. (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

The quake was subsequently felt as far away as Ensenada and Mexicali in Mexico, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Reno and Chico, Calif, LA times reported.

Thankfully, no deaths, serious injuries or major infrastructure damages, were reported.

A patient is being evacuated from Ridgecrest Regional Hospital after city was hit by a 6.4 earthquake Thursday morning

Hospital Chief Executive, James Suver, said patients at Ridgecrest Regional Hospital were evacuated “out of an abundance of caution,” About 20 patients were transferred to other facilities while seismic engineers inspected broken pipes in the facility.

Patients rest under a shade of tent after being evacuated from Ridgecrest Regional Hospital after city was hit by a 6.4 earthquake.

“For true emergencies, we will stabilize them and then get them to the right level of care,” James Suver said.

Andy Randolph and his son William stop for photos of a crack in California State Route 178 hours after a 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck the Searles Valley area. (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

Ridgecrest, a community of about 29,000 known to many skiers as a pit stop on the way to Mammoth, was inundated with offers of help, from neighboring towns, congressional leaders such as Rep. Kevin McCarthy and Sen. Kamala Harris and even the White House, Mayor Peggy Breeden said.

Earthquake damage to a grocery store in Ridgecrest. (Adam Graehl)

”With all this cooperation … we expect we will be able to move on to this and not see too many awful things happen,” Breeden said.

The quake, estimated to have been felt by some 15 million people, was the largest with an epicenter in Southern California since the magnitude 7.1 Hector Mine quake struck the Mojave Desert in 1999, about 35 miles north of Twentynine Palms Marine Corps base.

The last earthquake felt as widely as Thursday’s was the magnitude 7.2 earthquake on Easter Sunday 2010 that had an epicenter across the border in Baja California, LA time reported.


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