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Earthquake hits North Yorkshire

04 January 11 01:08
Ripon earthquake locator map

A small earthquake has hit northern England, scientists have confirmed.

The British Geological Survey (BGS) said the 3.6-magnitude quake struck 9km (5.5 miles) north-west of Ripon, North Yorkshire at about 2100 GMT on Monday.

People in Bingley and Skipton, north-west of Leeds, reported feeling tremors, which were experienced across Cumbria and West Yorkshire.

The BGS said a such an earthquake might be felt up to 100km (62 miles) away but was unlikely to cause much damage.

'House shook'

It said many people throughout the region had reported feeling the event.

BGS spokeswoman Dr Aoife O'Mongain said: "It would have only lasted for a couple of seconds. And at that strength it is not likely that it would have caused any damage.

"People living in the vicinity may have felt their windows rattling as if a lorry was going past."

David Jones, who lives just outside Skipton, was one of those who felt the quake.

He told BBC News: "I was downstairs and a heavy cast iron wood stove we've got rattled quite loudly for about five seconds. My wife upstairs said wardrobe doors were also rattling.

"I've spoken to friends who've reported front doors rattling and things like that.

"I have felt a couple of earthquakes in other parts of the world from time to time so I was fairly certain what it was as soon as I felt it."

Damian Boddy contacted the BBC to say he felt the earthquake in Boroughbridge, North Yorkshire.

He said: "The house shook as if a door slammed, thought it was burglars until we checked online news."

'Made me jump'

Emma-Jane Whelan, from Nunburnholme in the East Riding of Yorkshire, said: "I thought I had imagined it but I felt the tremor this evening. It made me jump.

"I turned off the TV and looked all round the house for what had caused the big 'crump' sound."

Insp Chris Wright of Cumbria Police said the force received two calls from the Kendal area reporting tremors.

He said: "There have been no reports of injury or damage so we notified the British Geological Survey for them to investigate."

The BGS said the last earthquake of any similar size in the area was a magnitude 2.8 event in 1970 in the Pennines.

Previous tremor

Geophysicist Paul Caruso of the United States Geological Survey said the quake was felt as far west as Blackpool and as far north as Sunderland.

He said: "Normally from an earthquake this size we'd expect things like some cracked sidewalks, people would see their chandeliers swinging back and forth, maybe some waves in their drink glasses.

"But we generally don't expect to see damage or deaths from earthquakes until they get up to about magnitude 5.5."

The tremors come after a 3.6-magnitude earthquake hit Cumbria on 21 December, and was felt in Lancashire, south-west Scotland, parts of Yorkshire, Northumberland and the Isle of Man.

Here is a selection of your comments:

I was in my office this evening just after 9pm when I experienced a tremor and felt the front of the building shake. It reminded me of a train travelling past at high speed.

Dean Anderson, Melmerby near Ripon, North Yorkshire

My nine-year-old daughter felt her bed shaking just as she was going to bed - I thought she was having me on until I looked on Facebook and saw a few people had mentioned feeling something. Then I saw the news!

Sharon Grace, Yeadon, Leeds

I sat reading a book when I felt the whole room shudder for a few seconds, the whole house shook. I thought one of my family members had slammed the outside door very forcefully, but when I went to investigate they were all watching TV and said they didn't feel anything! Thought I'd imagined the whole thing! I then checked online and confirmed it...

Helen Hunter, Huddersfield, West Yorkshire

I was upstairs in bed on the computer. The wind was blowing really hard so I was looking towards the window, but then I heard a rumbling and the house started to shake. It only lasted for a few seconds, but long enough for me to realise that something significant had just occured. Several of our neighbours came outside to see what had happened. No damage was done to our area.

Holly Howard, Pateley Bridge, North Yorkshire

We felt one very significant jolt just after 2100, our elderly neighbours came over to our house as they had also felt this and had been frightened by it.

Dave, Thirsk, North Yorkshire

Loud rumbling sound heard which sounded like an explosion in the distance. Our farmhouse is constructed of stone and the tremor was felt throughout the fabric of the house for approximately four seconds.

Steve Smith, Masham, North Yorkshire

Heard a dull thud just after 2100. Felt a sharp jolt, as if the whole house moved. Whole event no more than two seconds for us. No sign of any damage.

Stephen Mobbs, three miles west of Harrogate, North Yorkshire

Felt in Boroughbridge, two explosive tremors a couple of seconds apart. House creaked in-between, but no damage.

Miles Beecham, Boroughbridge, North Yorkshire

My wife and I felt the house judder for a few seconds round about 2100. Sometimes farm traffic down the village main street can cause our windows to rattle, but there was no traffic at this time, so we suspected a very small earthquake. We felt an earthquake about three or four years ago here in the same house but that one was much stronger and lasted over ten seconds. I think the epicentre of that one was near Lincoln.

Keith Robinson, Dishforth, near Ripon, North Yorkshire

Around 2100 I was working upstairs in my study and heard what sounded like a dull roar followed by movement which shook me in my chair and which banged the chair into the radiator next to me. My boyfriend who was downstairs at the time also felt the tremor.

Rebecca Atkins, Harrogate, North Yorkshire

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