Earthquake shakes foothills Friday night

Published 5:15 pm Saturday, February 15, 2014

Many area residents may have been watching the Olympics, Friday, February 14 at 10:23 p.m. and felt a strange shaking of their house.

According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), a 4.1 magnitude earthquake struck approximately seven miles from Edgefield, S.C. in the midlands at 10:23 p.m. Friday.

The earthquake was reported to be felt in South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia and as far away as Tennessee and Virginia.

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By 10:30 p.m., many foothills residents began posting on Facebook asking if anyone else felt the shake.

Polk County Emergency Management Director Bobby Arledge said Polk County Dispatch had several calls about the earthquake Friday night but there has been no damage reported locally.

South Carolina Emergency Management Division said South Carolina receives about 15-20 registered earthquakes per year and Friday night’s was the 13th and the largest in the past year. Friday night’s was the largest since a 4.4 earthquake struck Charleston in 2002. The largest earthquake ever recorded in South Carolina was a 7.3 magnitude in Charleston that occurred in 1886.

The last earthquake felt in the Polk County/Landrum area occurred on Oct. 29, 2012 when a 2.9 magnitude earthquake struck eight miles south of Marion, N.C. Some residents reported feeling the earthquake while many did not.

On Aug. 23, 2011 a 5.9 magnitude earthquake struck central Virginia and was felt widespread by many in the Carolinas and as far north as Canada. The 2011 quake lasted approximately 10 seconds in Tryon.

Perhaps the largest earthquake felt in the Polk County/Landrum area in recent years occurred at 6:07 a.m. about six miles east of Columbus on Dec. 7, 2007. The USGS confirmed the earthquake between Lake Adger and Mill Spring was a 3.1 magnitude. The 2007 earthquake was reportedly by residents in Rutherfordton and Hendersonville to Landrum and Glassy Mountain, S.C.

Edgefield, S.C. is located approximately 120 miles from Landrum, north of Augusta, Ga. and southwest of Saluda, S.C.