Photo: Steven Puetzer via Getty
  /  01.25.2023

A 4.2 magnitude earthquake followed by multiple aftershocks forced thousands of people awake in Southern California early Wednesday (Jan. 25) morning.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, it struck at 2:00 a.m. PST and was centered offshore 16 kilometers south of Malibu Beach and west of Los Angeles, at a depth of 14 kilometers. The earthquake was followed by a 3.5 magnitude aftershock at 2:03 a.m. and continuously weaker aftershocks at 2:22 a.m. and 2:38 a.m.

This forced the Los Angeles Fire Department to go into earthquake mode, which involved a completed strategic survey of all major “areas of concern” in the city. The LAFD also confirmed that there have been no immediate reports of injuries or damages due to the earthquake. “Your LAFD completed a strategic 470 square-mile survey of the City of Los Angeles following the 4.2M earthquake near Malibu. No damage or injuries were reported and normal operational mode has resumed,” the fire department announced in a statement at 2:45 a.m.

They added, “The LAFD reminds residents that, ‘You can’t predict, but you can prepare.’ Tips and resources for all disasters, not just earthquakes, are available in a FREE downloadable guide found at https://www.lafd.org/safety/disaster-preparedness.”

Hundreds of earthquakes happen in California every year, most of them very minor. According to the California Department of Conservation, the strongest earthquake, which struck Fort Tejon on Jan. 9, 1857, was recorded to be a magnitude of  7.9. Another big earthquake that killed nearly 3,000 people happened on April 18, 1906 in San Francisco.

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