Tuesday, 7 August 2012

The Earth Moved…

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.


  1. We're from California, living in Georgia now, and through the years felt a number of earthquakes. We were living in southern California when the big earthquake hit Los Angeles in the early 90's, it was truly scary. Glad yours was a small one.

  2. I never cease to be grateful that the British Isles, despite the lousy weather, are not really a hostile environment. I'd hate living under the threat of earthquakes, cyclones, or hurricanes and I'm so glad there aren't any poisonous snakes or insects, either.

    1. If you live in the Outer Hebrides, Jenny, you'll feel the force of the occasional hurricane. I've lived through three one of which destroyed my large conservatory. The highest gust was 147 mph but the real problem was the fact that it didn't pass through quickly as they usually do but stayed around for about 12 hours.

    2. PS We have vipers in Scotland too though not in the Hebrides.

  3. i have never felt one and hope never to. so far we have everything but earth quakes here in FL but it would not surprise me at all. sounds like you will not have another one for 10 more years. glad you are ok

  4. Yes, Monica, we are pretty safe here all things considered. Something for which to be thankful.

  5. Glad that everything is okay with you.
    I had the scare of an earthquake tremor a few years back....I was wide awake standing at the stove cooking and just saw the kitchen table moving, and feeling rather queasy in the head, especially after looking outside and seeing some buildings swaying.
    I had six dogs back then, and amazingly, all they were doing was running back and forth in the driveway, so I did the same thing and it really helped the sensation of moving back and forth. That was a scary afternoon.


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