4.3 earthquake strikes near LA, internet asks ‘why did it feel more sinister?’

Southern California hit with another earthquake centered in Carson, flaring at refineries triggers concerns of explosion after users spot large fire

                            4.3 earthquake strikes near LA, internet asks ‘why did it feel more sinister?’
REPRESENTATIVE IMAGE: Buckled asphalt runs across a section of an earthquake-damaged street on August 26, 2014, in Napa, California. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

On September 17 at 7:58 PM, Southern California was struck by yet another earthquake, this time centered in Carson. The 4.3 magnitude quake hasn't caused any property damage, or severe injuries so far, but emergency departments have sprung into action in Los Angeles. Meanwhile, users have flocked to social media to confirm if the event even happened, while others used it as an opportunity to troll fellow Californians for their habit of checking social media first.

The Carson quake is just one of the many to be felt across the state, which is also currently battling intense wildfires. On July 9, a 5.9 magnitude quake hit the California- Nevada border, followed by dozens of aftershocks. That came just days after a June 28 4.2 quake, centered near the Castro Valley. Adding to the troubles, large wildfires have also engulfed California, getting worse each year. In July, officials were forced to evacuate parts of Alpine County due to the Tamarack fire.


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The September 17 quake was felt over a large area, including Manhattan Beach, Redondo Beach, and Long Beach in Los Angeles, as well as the nearby counties of Orange County and Riverside County. The US Geological Survey noted that the quake was also felt as far as Oxnard in the north and Carlsbad in the south. Seismologist Dr. Lucy Jones tweeted that the quake originated at a depth of 15km, west of the Newport-Inglewood fault. 

People walk near cracks in the road after a 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck the area on July 4, 2019, near Ridgecrest, California. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)


Explosion reported in Torrance

Fire department vehicles will patrol Los Angeles with vehicles and helicopters to identify the damage or emergency needs, it was reported. So far though, it doesn't appear as if any serious damage or injuries have occurred, barring reported explosions in Torrance. Local reporter Brian Douglas also tweeted a video of fire at the Marathon Refinery in Carson but confirmed it was 'flaring', i.e a safety measure where excess gasses are burnt. The flaring was so prominent it was seen from miles away, and even felt in Torrance.



Users in Torrance reported a loud boom, wondering if an explosion had been triggered by the quake. That theory was put to rest by one user, who claimed, "False alarm. The earthquake triggered the refineries in Wilmington, Carson, and Torrance emergency off gas (controlled burn). There is no uncontrolled fire. Back to your regularly scheduled Friday night programming." Reportedly, fire crews were called to the Carson refinery after many locals spotted the fire, but they were turned around after it was confirmed to be flaring.



Users mock those flocking to Twitter

Apart from the reports of flaring, social media was mostly filled with memes and trolls about the quake. "No cuz why did this quake feel a little more sinister than our normal ones," one user asked. Another noted, "That #earthquake did NOT start slow and work it’s way up like usual.. this one went straight to the point!!!" One person mocked, "Immediately running to twitter to see if that actually was an #earthquake or just my neighbour falling down the stairs again."





others though seemed more than eager to mock their fellow Californians. One user tweeted a video of a marathon and said, "Californians rushing to tweet about the earthquake." Another shared a still from 'The Simpsons' and said, "Me going on Twitter to see if anyone else felt that earthquake." One user tweeted a cat GIF with the words, "Everyone rushing to twitter to say they felt an #earthquake right now."





 Beyond the flaring in Carson and other nearby refineries, it appears there is nothing significant yet about this quake yet. If any developments occur, we will update this story.

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