An earthquake registering between 6.0 to 6.1 hit Northern California’s Napa Valley at around 3:20 a.m. Sunday (Aug. 24) destroying buildings, knocking out electricity, and injuring 87 people. Over 30 aftershocks have been reported, in what is the biggest tremor to hit the area in 25 years.
The quake was centered between Napa and American Canyon, but was felt as far south as Santa Cruz. Gov. Jerry Brown has declared a state of emergency.
From the Contra Costa Times:
At least three people suffered serious injuries. There were no early reports of fatalities.
The last time an earthquake of this size hit the Bay Area was in 1989, when the infamous Loma Prieta quake at magnitude 6.9 caused severe damage. The largest on record was the historic 7.8 earthquake that hit San Francisco in 1906.
At Queen of the Valley Medical Center in Napa, an outdoor triage area outside the emergency room was set up to handle an anticipated influx. About 89 patients had been treated for earthquake-related injuries as of 7:45 a.m., hospital officials said, and about two-dozen ambulances were in service. Most of those injuries entailed cuts, bumps and bruises.
There were “lots of cut feet,” hospital president Walt Mickens said.
Mickens said three patients have critical injuries, including one child. One of the two adult critical patients suffered a heart attack and another underwent surgery after fracturing a hip. The child patient was later taken by helicopter to a trauma center.
Reports of damage also began to pour in, with fires destroying four senior mobile homes on Orchard Avenue, as crews had to let it burn out because of a broken water main. Other structures in Napa were starting to crumble, with assorted windows shattering downtown. The Goodman Library, the Alexandria building and the historic county courthouse all were badly damaged, with brick facades crumbling into the street.
Some streetlights in Napa were knocked out, the California Highway Patrol said. People posted pictures on social media of a Walmart and grocery stores with bottles knocked over and shattered. Some residents posted pictures of their kitchens in disarray. One man posted a picture of his chimney knocked over. In Vallejo, the CHP closed some roadways because of damage, with some cracked and elevated. At least 50 gas mains broke, and at least 30 water mains broke. Countless bottles of the region’s most famous product — wine — had shattered.
A Red Cross evacuation center was set up at the Napa High School gym.
Some 42,000 people are still without power all over the Bay Area.
See photos below.