Around 5 am on Monday morning (6 August 2012) a shallow earthquake of magnitude 4.4 with the epicenter below Kattegatt occurred off the south-west coast of Sweden. It was felt in both Sweden and Denmark and woke up a lot of people.
Earthquakes with a magnitude 3 occur almost every year in Sweden but earthquakes like this approx. every 10 years. It’s said to have lasted about 15 seconds. No damage has been reported.
In a village on the coast south of Halmstad, people first thought that a freight train must be derailing near the community. Others report that their first thought was that a heavy truck must be passing by just outside their home, or something like that.
Today (Tuesday) my local newspaper informs me that the quake was felt by some even as far inland as in and around this town.
At that time of morning, if I felt the earth moving a little while I was asleep or half-asleep in bed, I guess my brain would have interpreted it as just another a train passing… Living close to a railway, I’m used to heavy freight trains shaking the ground a little a few times a day (and night).
A reminder that in a global perspective, our little corner of the world is still, after all, rather quiet and secure.