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San Diego Earthquakes

March 19, 2013 | By | Reply More


Believe it or not, I’ve actually met travelers who are hesitant to visit La Jolla because of our state’s history of earthquakes. This always amazes me because I’ve lived here most of my life and, while there have been a few minor shakes, our quakes never do much damage.

The experts at San Diego State University and Scripps Institution of Oceanography also agree that San Diego earthquakes usually end up being non-events:

“The San Diego area is relatively safe seismically, at least compared with other population centers in California.”

When I spoke with Kevin L. Robinson, Lecturer, Department of Geological Sciences, San Diego State University, he described one of the more memorable San Diego earthquakes:

“The last good one that most everyone felt in San Diego was on Easter Sunday, April 4, 2010. The 7.2 Mexicali quake shook the region for over 30 seconds. It was not a big killer because it happened in the desert west of Mexicali, outside any metro area. There were some structures damaged and one person killed (they panicked and ran into the street and got hit by a car). Irrigation canals south of the border were hard hit and took over two years to fix having a big impact on farmers. The quake was felt all over southern California, some distant locations experienced more shaking due to waves preferentially directed and also by waves refracted back to the surface from the mantle.”

I was out of town and missed the 2010 quake, but I do remember some rattling from the early morning Northridge quake in 1994. I also know people who slept right through it.

The point being that – so far at least – earthquake damage in La Jolla and other parts of San Diego usually amounts to a few books falling off a shelf.

Excessive sun exposure is a more serious threat, and the biggest potential problem that will develop on a La Jolla vacation is that you’ll fall in love with the area and never want to leave. My friend Michelle Silverman at Prudential California Realty is just one of the many La Jolla real estate brokers who have sold homes to visitors who became enamored with our beautiful community.

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Category: San Diego earthquakes

About the Author ()

I live in La Jolla and I'm a travel writer, so in addition to enjoying my home town's great weather, beautiful surroundings, and range of cultural and recreational options, I also see La Jolla - and the rest of San Diego - as a travel destination. And what I see sometimes drives me batty. People vacation in La Jolla, but don't take advantage of everything our community offers, so I decided to start this blog and provide insider advice for out-of-towners. Hey. I figure if I can write insider tips about exotic destinations on Authentic Luxury Travel, I ought to be able to lead readers off the beaten path that starts just outside my front door. In the process, I'm having fun revisiting my favorite places and discovering some new ones. Travel writers are naturally snoopy, and this blog is my excuse to have a good ol' sticky beak around my home town. I hope you find it helpful. If you are coming to La Jolla or another area of San Diego and would like my help in planning your trip, please read "Need Help Planning Your Trip" and then email me at ehansen298@aol.com. Elizabeth Hansen

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