Small tremor centered near Tellico Plains

Small tremor centered near Tellico Plains

December 18, 2006

MADISONVILLE (WATE) -- Several East Tennessee residents were rattled out of bed early Monday morning by a small earthquake.  

According to data from the U.S. Geological Survey, a 3.3 magnitude quake was recorded at 3:34 a.m. just three miles west of Tellico Plains in Monroe County. That's about an hour-and-a-half southwest of Knoxville.

Residents neighboring McMinn County also called 911, saying they thought they heard an explosion. Some reported hearing their windows rattle.

The quake was also reportedly felt as far away as Brasstown, N.C.

So far, there have been no reports of any damage.

The quake shook in what earth scientists call the Eastern Tennessee seismic zone, which extends across Tennessee and northwestern Georgia into northeastern Alabama.

Though it is believed no large earthquakes have shaken the earth in this zone, it is one of the most active earthquake areas in the Southeast.

Only a few earthquakes in the Eastern Tennessee zone have caused slight damage.

The largest known quake to hit the zone happened on April 29, 2003, when a 4.9 magnitude tremor was centered near Fort Payne, Ala.

Earthquakes less frequently in the central and eastern U.S. than they do in the western U.S., but they are typically felt over a much broader region.

 

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