PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A 4.7 magnitude earthquake hit off the Oregon coast on Thursday afternoon.
The USGS said the quake was 155km WNW of Port Orford.
It’s unclear if residents in coastal towns nearby felt the quake.
Earthquakes off the Oregon coast are not uncommon. Professor Scott Burns at Portland State University told KOIN 6 earlier this year that large quakes are common in that area.
Burns explained that near Coos Bay there is a very large fault called the Blanco Fault.
“It’s an intersection between two plates. And so 200 miles off of the coast of Oregon we have a chain of volcanoes that is creating a plate that is moving in this direction, called the Juan De Fuca plate. And that’s what we always talk about being subducted under North America, at a rate of 4.5 centimeters a year. And so that’s about as fast as your fingernail grows,” he explained.
He said that scientists are still studying the fault zones and can’t say whether or not this is a sign the Big One is coming.