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Arkansans experience a bit of shake, rattle and roll

By: 28 February 2011 3 Comments

GREENBRIAR–The month of February has been earth-shaking for the state of Arkansas, literally.

According to the United States Geological Survey, a 4.7-magnitude earthquake rumbled beneath Greenbriar shortly after 11 p.m. on Sunday. Although centered in the middle of the state, the quake was felt statewide — and several states away.

“I was sitting on my loveseat browsing the Internet on my laptop and talking on the phone. Suddenly, it felt like someone walked up behind the couch and started jerking it back and forth. It didn’t feel like a rapid shaking; it was more like a quick rocking back and forth,” said Kristi Barnes Mitchell of Bentonville. “It scared me, because it was late and I was home alone. It didn’t take long for me to realize what it was.

“I said ‘oh my gosh, I just felt an earthquake!’ As soon as I said that, my boyfriend said ‘What was that!?,’ Mitchell continued. “I asked him if he felt the earthquake, too, and apparently he had. He was at his house in Rogers and I was at my home here in Bentonville.”

Hundreds of other people have contributed their thoughts on the USGS website.

Sunday’s quake may have been the strongest felt in years, but it’s far from being the only recent earthquake in the area. More than 60 small quakes have been experienced in the area in the last two weeks. It’s still unclear just what is causing the tremors-if they are caused by mining or by true tectonic plate shifts.

“These earthquake swarms are not that unusual for the region,” said Harley Benz, scientist in charge at the U.S. Geological Survey National Earthquake Information Center. “Central Arkansas has a history of earthquake activity with a swarm of thousands of earthquakes smaller than magnitude 4.5 in the early 1980s and another swarm in 2001, known as the Enola earthquake swarms.”

About: Jamie Smith:
Experienced reporter who is now an entrepreneur. Jamie's Notebook offers writing services including press releases, corporate blogging and feature writing.


  • Lynn Cee said:

    That should be ‘tectonic’ (geology of the earth’s structure) plate shifts … not “Teutonic.” Teutonic means ancient and Germanic (of Germany), so not likely. 😉

  • Jamie Smith (author) said:

    OUCH! I should know better than to go with spell check. If it’s any consolation, I had the correct word the first time but spell check made me doubt myself. It is being corrected now. A million thanks!

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