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Strongest of 6 quakes hits county

Another weak earthquake —the strongest of six far this year — was recorded Saturday night along the Marion-Chase county line.

The magnitude 2.7 quake, too weak to cause damage or to be felt by most people, hit at 6:23 p.m. south of 240th Rd. and Middle Creek, an eighth of a mile inside Marion County, on land listed as being the farmstead of Bradley J. Matz.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the quake occurred in “basement” granite a little more than five miles below the surface.

Quakes in the region, known as the Nemeha uplift, where granite has pushed unusually close to the surface, are attributed by seismologists to geographic forces that created or were created by the Flint Hills.

Although more damaging quakes can occur anywhere, scientists say, there’s no special danger of damaging quakes in this area because of the series of minor temblors.

All five of the quakes earlier this year occurred within a two-mile radius. They included quakes measuring 2.3 and 2.5 on May 2, 2.6 on March 7, 2.5 on March 5, and 2.2 on Jan. 4.

Last year, two more quakes were recorded in the same area — magnitudes 2.5 and a 2.8, both on Nov. 2.

The only other earthquake in the county in the past two years was a 2.2-magnitude temblor Oct. 10 northeast of US-77 and 170th Rd.

Although most Nehama uplift quakes cannot be felt, they sometimes can be heard — a sound somewhat like thunder, as deep, subterranean rocks crack.

Last modified May 18, 2023

 

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