|
|
|
The Sun-Times - Heber Springs, AR
  • Earthquake rattles northern Arkansas Monday

  • Much of northern Arkansas and a portion of southern Missouri felt a 3.8 magnitude earthquake around 8:33 a.m. Monday. The quake was centered about two miles southeast of Guy in Faulkner County.

    • email print
  • Much of northern Arkansas and a portion of southern Missouri felt a 3.8 magnitude earthquake around 8:33 a.m. Monday. The quake was centered about two miles southeast of Guy in Faulkner County.
    The Arkansas Geological Survey was contacted early afternoon Monday about the quake. “There were three aftershocks with the most significant being 2.5 and 3.5,” said Scott Ausbrooks, geohazard supervisor with AGS. “There have been 50 quakes in the area within the last two weeks.”
    He also said the speculation that the gas well drilling is causing the quakes has been unfounded, but they are investigating another possible cause. “The 3,000 wells from Morrilton to Searcy to Greenbrier to Clinton to Heber Springs don’t line up with where the earthquakes are occurring. We are, however, looking into the possibility that deeper saltwater disposal wells are the cause.
    “When fracking (injecting water and other chemicals into the ground to help fracture rocks) is done, they can only use the water a certain amount of times. Once the water can no longer be used they dig a deeper well and put the water in it. This is allowed under law and meets environmental guidelines.
    “What we believe is happening is when the old water is put into the deeper wells it reduces the friction in the fault. This doesn’t cause a quake it just speeds up the process. The quake will happen somewhere down the line anyway, but this process may be making them happen sooner.”
    Ausbrooks said the 3.8 Monday is the largest since the rash of quakes began a year or two ago.
    According to Ausbrooks and the AGS website, there was a swarm of quakes around Enola in the early 80’s. The website reports “The Enola swarm was initiated by a magnitude 1.2 earthquake recorded on January 12, 1982 near the town of Enola in Faulkner County.
    “Since then, over 40,000 seismic events have been recorded in the Enola area. Most of the recorded seismic events are microquakes, but at least 93 earthquakes have been felt in the local area by at least one person during the first year of seismic activity. Earthquake magnitudes have not exceeded a 4.5, which occurred on Jan. 21, 1982. No structural damage has ever occurred, although there have been reports of broken china.
    “These earthquakes are not associated with the New Madrid seismic zone of northeast Arkansas and there is no history or research that suggests any cause/effect relationship between the two regions.”
    A few readers shared their experiences.
    Fred Prentice, Heber Springs- “I was at home on Woodland West in Heber Springs when it happened. My neighbor and I felt it. It was very quick. The ground felt like it was rolling, like a rolling sensation. I didn’t hear anything, just felt it.”
    Melissa Garner, Heber Springs- “I was driving in from Conway and was in the area at the time, but I didn’t feel it.”
    Page 2 of 2 - Mark McKenzie, Heber Springs- “I have never experienced an earthquake before but I knew immediately what it was. I was at my home at Eden Isle when I felt the ground trimmer and heard the noise (it sounded like an explosion happened a mile away). I felt it but nothing in the house seemed to shake.”
    From our Facebook page
    Rick Gardner, Heber Springs- “I felt it. I was here in the store. I thought it might have been an earthquake since it lasted at least 30 seconds, but I was not sure since I have never experienced one before. No damage to report, no swaying instruments. The sound was more noticeable than the feeling of the ground moving.”
    Robyn Short, Heber Springs- “I was at Dr. Bivins’ office around 8:30, I didn't feel it or hear it...but others did.”
    Roxanne Lindsey, Quitman- “I live in Quitman and nothing at all here! But I did call and add earthquake coverage to my house insurance today!”
    Teresa Barden-Hacker, Heber Springs- “I was at home off Hwy 337 at Heber Springs and about 8:30 a.m. things started shaking in my house, even house plants, and my first thought was that the Dam had broke. It was a scary feeling! I never really knew what it was until about 2 hours later when I heard it on the news.”
    Pricillia Brewer Helms, Drasco- “I live in Drasco and I felt it about 8:30. All the dogs around us started howling and then I heard a boom. At that point my windows started shaking and other glass items in my house started to rattle.”
    Joyce Pennington, near Rose Bud- “I live toward Rose Bud. I thought a BIG truck was coming up my drive. I've been in earthquakes before and you don' t forget. I felt a little vibration and started counting and waiting for something to fall off the wall or break. But the sound went thru my house like a phantom truck and just kept going towards Heber. I posted it on the government site, which is very interesting.”
    Kitty Lemmons, Heber Springs- “I knew exactly that it was an earthquake, the feeling is unmistakable, I've been in several when I lived in So. California. I was at the office on Hwy. 110 West towards Eden Isle, at 8:30 a.m.”
      • calendar