Tremors from 7.7-magnitude earthquake in B.C. felt in Edmonton
Published Sunday, October 28, 2012 5:11PM MDT Last Updated Sunday, October 28, 2012 6:22PM MDT
Tremors from a 7.7-magnitude earthquake that hit the British Columbia coastline Saturday night were not only felt by those in B.C., but even reached as far away as here in Edmonton.
The quake was the second strongest to hit Canada in 100 years and prompted tsunami warnings from Alaska to Hawaii. It was also felt more than 1,500 kilometres away, by Edmontonians.
Cathy and Michael Walsh are still in disbelief after a shaky evening 14 storeys up on their highrise building on Saskatchewan Drive, as they were preparing to go to bed.
“All of a sudden I started having that sensation where your heart starts to beat strong and your whole body is almost moving with it and I thought, well that’s odd. We had some towels on the wall and I noticed they were swinging,” Cathy described to CTV News.
“The sensation felt physical because my body was moving and yes, I immediately did think earthquake.”
Cathy said her husband thought he was going to black out.
“He had the experience where he was on his chair in his office and he could feel a movement as well. He explained that he felt like he was almost going to black out. He looked over to the right and saw the blinds were swaying back and forth,” Cathy said.
“I noticed I was moving not of my own accord,” Michael said. “It was the oddest sensation.”
While it is odd for an earthquake to be felt such a long distance away, one expert says it’s not impossible for those living in Alberta to feel the effects of the quake.
“If you’re in the right area, say you’re in an area that has thick, loose sediments below your building, or especially if you’re in a tower, then you may feel the energy of the earthquake waves,” said Brent Ward, associate professor of Earth Sciences at Simon Fraser University.
The Walsh’s weren’t the only ones in the province to feel the tremors either.
Many people took to social media to share their own quake stories.
“Tsunami warning issued for the island after 7.7 earthquake?! I felt the aftershock in my 16th floor apt in yeg (Edmonton),” one person posted to Twitter.
"Totally felt an earthquake in my Edmonton condo, must have been a big one on the coast," another tweet read.
“My sister was in her room in the basement and she said that around 9:11 p.m. she noticed that everything that was hanging from her ceiling and the shirts her closet was swaying. We live in Northern Alberta,” writes Jenni Lafleur on Facebook.
And while Cathy says she’s experienced two other earthquakes in her lifetime and has even taken a training course on what to do if you’re caught in an earthquake, she said feeling one this weekend was a complete surprise.
“Living on the Prairies, you just think it’s never going to happen here,” she said.
With files from Breanna Karstens-Smith