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Earthquake Rattles Bay Area

Elizabeth Silva
Staff Writer

A 6.0 earthquake shook Napa County early Sunday morning, injuring over 170 people in Napa Valley, rupturing gas and water lines, and damaging historic buildings in Napa and roads on Highway 37 and State Routes 12 and 121. USF’s Department of Public Safety reported that there were no injuries or damage on campus.

Whereas most Bay Area natives have previously experienced an earthquake and were not too shaken up by the experience, some USF students experienced their first earthquake this weekend.

“It was scary,” said Tanvi Chauhan, a first year graduate student, “By the time we realized, oh my god it’s an earthquake, and that we should run out and get the safety and emergency things, it was over.”

“When I was sleeping, I thought that someone was dancing because the bed was shaking. The whole building was shaking,” said Huimin Wang, ’17, Fromm resident. “It wasn’t until I went into the hall and heard someone say that it was an earthquake that I realized what it was.”

On Sunday morning, USF’s Department of Public Safety called, texted, and emailed students about the earthquake. After a thorough search of all the buildings, the Department of Public Safety determined that there was no obvious damage and that there were no reports of injuries.

The earthquake, which was centered in American Canyon, was the strongest earthquake in Northern California since the 6.9 Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989, according to CBS Sacramento. It was at a depth of six miles and occurred at 3:20 am while many people were sleeping. Aftershocks of a significantly lesser strength occurred after the earthquake.

In Napa, the library and historic Chinese laundry business suffered significant damage, as did the courthouse. Debris and glass lined the sidewalks of downtown Napa on Sunday. San Francisco, among other Bay Area locations, was fortunate enough to not suffer any damages.

“It was stronger than others I felt,” said Luigi Pulido, ’17. “I was home for the weekend, but my roommate in Phelan said that he felt it and just waited in the room for it to pass before checking the halls right after. He’s from Sacramento so he’s felt them before.”

Other USF students also felt the earthquake.

“Well, I was sleeping, and my [brother] and I both share a room. We both actually woke up right before the earthquake and when we felt it we were both very shaken. We continually asked each other if we were alright during the earthquake and we could hear our parents upstairs walking around checking if everything was alright,” reported Aaron Lee, ’18, who lives off campus.

Many students, however, did not feel the earthquake at all.

“I actually didn’t feel it and slept right through it,” said Kelli Hughes, ’17, a LoMo resident. “I only found out about it because my family texted me and wanted to see if I was okay.”

Julia Pynes, ’17, a LoMo resident, also slept through the earthquake, but said that her friend who also lives on the sixth floor of LoMo “woke up and could see the walls shaking.”

“I heard other people say that they were woken up by the earthquake and their doorway and beds started shaking. Other than that there were no evacuations because it did happen so early and I never even woke up,” said Christine Coughlan, ’17, a LoMo resident. 

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