1989 – So. Wasatch Plateau, UT – M 5.4

Intermountain Seismic Belt Historical Earthquake Project

January 29, 1989 – So. Wasatch Plateau, UT – M 5.4

A magnitude 5.4 earthquake struck the southern Wasatch Plateau approximately 15 miles east southeast of Salina, Sevier County, Utah, at 9:06 p.m. on Sunday, January 29, 1989.

The felt area for the earthquake was 148,000 square kilometers (~57,143 square miles) and extended from northeastern Utah to southwestern Wyoming, western Colorado and northern Arizona.

In Sevier County, Utah, buildings were shaken strongly enough for pictures to come off walls. Minor structural damage was reported. Some telephone service was interrupted in Carbon and Millard Counties. A power plant in Millard County was shut down for short time and another in Emery County had service interrupted briefly.

Officials inspected roads, dams and railways in the areas surrounding the epicenter, but no damage was reported. Interstate 70 was temporarily closed due to a rockslide in Salina Canyon, but was quickly cleared and re-opened.

Calls flooded into Salt Lake Valley and Utah County police agencies reporting shaken homes, swaying light fixtures and moving furniture. One individual in Provo said she was knocked to the floor from the force of the shaking.

No significant damage or injuries were reported for this earthquake.



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1961 – Ephraim, UT – M 5.0

Intermountain Seismic Belt Historical Earthquake Project

April 15, 1961 – Ephraim, UT – M 5.0

A magnitude 5.0 earthquake occurred near Ephraim, Utah at 11:02 p.m. on Saturday, April 15, 1961.

The shaking was most intense at Ephraim and Spring City, Utah. In Ephraim, dishes rattled and light fixtures began to swing. Some buildings sustained cracked walls and bricks were shaken from chimneys. Late night theatergoers at one establishment hurriedly left the building as the earthquake occurred. Reportedly, the greatest damage was to people’s nerves, as they feared more shaking would occur.

Shaking was felt as far north as the towns of Fairview, Moroni, and Fountain Green, Utah and as far south as Manti, Utah.

One person living near Moroni said his dogs began barking, pheasants crowed and flying birds struck windows.

In Manti the shaking was strong enough to awaken some sleeping individuals. Light fixtures swayed and dishes were knocked from shelves. Goods were shaken from store shelves. There was plaster damage to at least one home. Another building sustained a cracked ceiling.

Many who felt the shaking thought their furnaces or water heaters had exploded.



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1914 – Ogden, UT – M 5½ ±

Intermountain Seismic Belt Historical Earthquake Project

May 13, 1914 – Ogden, UT – M 5½ ±

People from Collinston, Utah to Riverton, Utah were shaken as a magnitude 5½ ± earthquake struck Ogden, Utah at 10:15 a.m. on Wednesday, May 13, 1914.

In Ogden, shaken buildings sustained cracks and plaster damage to walls as well as downed chimneys. Various parts of the city reported cracked windowpanes.

In Farmington, Utah and Bountiful, Utah those in two-story buildings were frightened as dishes rattled and furniture moved.

In downtown Salt Lake City, Utah some workers in tall office buildings wondered if the shaking was due to an elevator that had dropped to the basement. Some frightened individuals hurried out of buildings. During a meeting at the Salt Lake City and County building, the chandelier overhead swayed and the table shook. Those in nearly all offices felt chairs shake and tables rock, however, those in hallways did not feel the shaking. In addition to the business district, south and southwest Salt Lake City felt strong shaking that caused dishes to fall to the floor.

No significant damage and no injuries were reported for this earthquake.



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1887 – Kanab, UT – M 5.7

Intermountain Seismic Belt Historical Earthquake Project

December 5, 1887 – Kanab, UT – M 5.7

On Monday, December 5, 1887 a magnitude 5.7 earthquake occurred in Kanab, Utah.

It was reported that dishes were shaken from cupboard shelves in several houses. Clocks stopped, and bricks fell from tops of chimneys and some cracks in houses were observed. The shaking frightened many people in the community. In some cases, people who were walking were thrown to the ground by the shaking.

One resident reported that a loud rumbling sound accompanied the shaking. His house shook, the clock stopped and the house door slammed shut. He discovered several cracks in the west wall of his house, one of which ran straight down through the rock foundation.

Tons of rock reportedly fell from nearby cliffs, raising clouds of dust.

No significant damage nor injuries were reported for this earthquake.



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1900 – Eureka, UT – M 5½ ±

Intermountain Seismic Belt Historical Earthquake Project

August 1, 1900 – Eureka, UT – M 5½ ±

In the town of Eureka, Utah, people were awakened at 12:45 a.m. on Wednesday, August 1, 1900, by shaking from a magnitude 5½ ± earthquake. Some frightened individuals ran out into the street in their robes and nightclothes. Some reported that the shaking moved furniture and shook dishes from shelves.

In the nearby Tintic mining district, it was reported that the shaking drove frightened workers from mines.

The earthquake was also felt in other central Utah towns. Many people in Santaquin were frightened out of bed and reported that beds shook, dishes rattled and goods were shaken from store shelves. In Payson, store windows were broken and dishes fell from cupboards. Some in the city of Provo were aroused from bed and reported that buildings shook and windows rattled. In Nephi, dishes were shaken from shelves. People in Goshen fled from houses.

Further north, the shaking was felt in Salt Lake City, Utah and at the Saltair resort on the south shore of the Great Salt Lake.

While this early morning earthquake frightened many people, no injuries were reported, nor were there reports of serious property damage.



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1945 – Flathead Lake, MT – M 5.5

Intermountain Seismic Belt Historical Earthquake Project

September 23, 1945 – Flathead Lake, MT – M 5.5

At 2:57 a.m. on Sunday, September 23, 1945, a magnitude 5.5 earthquake occurred near Lakeside, Montana on the northwest side of Flathead Lake.

The earthquake was reported felt in western Montana, northern Idaho and eastern Washington. There were reports of dishes and windows rattling from Helena, Montana to Walla Walla, Washington. In Kalispell, Montana the shaking awakened most people. Many reported their homes creaking. No significant damage or injuries were reported.



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1952 – Bigfork, MT – M 5.5

Intermountain Seismic Belt Historical Earthquake Project

March 31, 1952 – Bigfork, MT – M 5.5

A magnitude 5.5 earthquake occurred in Montana at 5:37 p.m. on Monday, March 31, 1952. The epicenter was located approximately 15 miles east of Bigfork, Montana—a town on the northeast shore of Flathead Lake, Montana.

Reports from some individuals on the east shore of Flathead Lake noted that pictures swung on the wall and wood in houses creaked. In Kalispell, Montana (approximately 23 miles northwest of Bigfork) it was reported that houses shook, kitchen doors rattled and tables moved.

No injuries or significant damage from this earthquake was reported.



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UUSS invited to become a formal Member-Institution of the International Seismological Centre (ISC).

The University of Utah Seismograph Stations (UUSS) is excited to announce it was recently invited to become a formal Member-Institution of the International Seismological Centre (ISC).

The ISC is a non-governmental, non-profit international organization which maintains extensive information about earthquakes and other seismic events from around the world. ISC members strive to collect, archive, and process seismic station and network bulletins and prepare and distribute the ISC bulletin – the definitive summary of the world’s seismicity.

Since its inception in the 1960s, the ISC has provided invaluable data used by thousands of seismologists worldwide. The current ISC mission is to maintain the ISC bulletin, the International Seismographic Station Registry, and the IASPEI Reference Event list. ISC also maintains several other important catalogs, contacts, and datasets.

The UUSS is honored to join the ISC. It joins 68 other research and operational organizations in 50 countries that support the ISC. Other ISC Members in the United States include NEIC/USGS, IRIS, and the TexNet of the University of Texas at Austin. The invitation to join comes as a great recognition of the important work of the UUSS on a national, and now international, scale.

1894 – Ogden, UT – M 5.0

Intermountain Seismic Belt Historical Earthquake Project

July 18, 1894 – Ogden, UT – M 5.0

A magnitude 5.0 earthquake occurred in Ogden, Utah at 3:50 p.m. on Wednesday, July 18, 1894.

According to a report, the earthquake was accompanied by a cracking sound similar to the snapping of timbers. The earthquake shook buildings, cracked walls, moved office desks and bookcases, caused items to fall from shelves, light fixtures to sway, and dishes to be shaken from tables. Alarmed individuals fled from buildings. No injuries were reported.



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1891 – St. George, UT – M 5.0

Intermountain Seismic Belt Historical Earthquake Project

April 20, 1891 – St. George, UT – M 5.0

A magnitude 5.0 earthquake struck St. George, Utah at 6:55 a.m. on Monday, April 20, 1891.

Reports from St. George noted that the earthquake shook houses and rattled windows. Damage included a downed chimney, fallen plaster and broken dishes (Stover & Coffman, 1993). The shaking caused some to feel seasick, while others reported feeling the sensation of an electric shock. Frightened individuals fled from buildings, however, there were no reports of injuries.

The earthquake was also felt in the town of Virgin, Utah, approximately 33 miles to the northeast, where windows, doors and dishes rattled.



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