Earthquake Report, March 28-29: Ground Settling Down Near the Sonora Triangle [UPDATE: But Look to the Hills!]


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Earthquakes - the Sonora Triangle

The light blue square is one square mile, near the center of which is the conjunction of La Habra, Brea, and Fullerton. All three earthquakes of over 3.5 on the Richter scale can within less than a half mile radius, of the intersection of Lambert and Palm, a corner that features Sonora High School.

We’ll try to have some reports during the day about last night’s earthquakes centered near Sonora High School in La Habra and Brea.  Watching journalists trying to figure out where to say the quake occurred last night, I had to sympathize with them — that’s a part of the county where the borders get a bit wacky.  It’s closest to the central part of La Habra, but it looks like both 3.6 quakes took place in Fullerton while the largest quake was in Brea — all within a mile-square area where the three cities come together like puzzle pieces.

I’ll get this post up now to allow for commenting; I’ll add my own story (and some of yours), as can some of our other writers, as things continue to settle down.  We’re still having some nice small aftershocks — even a 1.6 gets your attention when it’s half a mile away and a tenth of a mile down — right here in the area; I’ll review the news to see whether the flooding and electrical outages have improved overnight.

8:35 a.m.  For those who don’t realize it, this is where Twitter really comes into its own.  For example, let me introduce you to the automated QuakeBot, which chronicles what’s shaking in the Southland.

9:02 a.m.  And a bang and a boom!  Another relatively large shock, with both the rocking and the rolling, felt hear near the Sonora Triangle!  Like many of the recent aftershocks, it seems to be under Gilbert Street north of Rosecrans, which is where the water main broke last night.  I think that that was the largest one that we’ve felt since midnight or so — but that may have more to do with our proximity rather than its magnitude.

4:00 p.m.  Or … not.  After spending much of the morning messing around with northernmost Fullerton, the true intention of the earthquake swarm was revealed at 2:32 p.m. today when a long and rolling quake, emanating from deep in the southernmost Rowland Heights hills abutting unincorporated Brea, demonstrated that the real plan is for the Puente Hills to continue their long-term assault on their northern neighbor, Mt. Baldy.  By creating a suitable upwardly thrusting rocky foundation, the Puente Hills dream of someday looking down at the entire ridge, fully accepted as their geological equal.  Well, that plan is madness, Puente Hills – madness — and you might as well abandon whatever long range plans you have and leave those of us in northern OC and the southern San Gabriel Valley in peace!

Here’s a map showing Sonora High School at the lower left, located in the square mile block of yesterday’s offensive, and the latest attack on public calm centered in Landsdowne Road, heretofore primarily known (at least in my family) as the last street in an area offering a pretty great view of the valley.

Earthquake - Sonora High to Landsdowne Rd

With actions moving from the Sonora Triangle to the Puente Hills — and now I’m getting serious for a moment in this update — it does seem like we should attend to the possibility of additional large quakes, because those sizable hills didn’t just come around from ancient giant dogs scooping dirt out of the Pacific Ocean and hurling it backwards, no matter what the science textbooks from Texas say.  (Note: “serious moment” ended a couple dozen words ago.)

Update, Mar. 30, 1 a.m.

My daughter was in Brea-Olinda High School’s production of Bye Bye Birdie — which we attended last night (and which was cancelled for tonight due to inclement ground quaking.)  This video shows BOHS’s gifted singer and comic actor Daniel Dwyer — who really is going to be a star after he graduates this year — performing the song “Talk to Me” as the earthquake hits.  It was posted by his sister Julia, herself a recent alumna of BOHS’s Show Choir.

That’s “AJ the Sound Guy” doing an excellent job of crowd control there at the end.

The production has already withstood the smaller earthquake from one hour earlier without a hiccup, exemplifying the philosophy of “the show must go on!” As you can see, though, sometimes the show must not go on, although Dwyer gamely stayed on stage for several seconds after the quake started, until it became clear that it was curtains for the performance.


About Greg Diamond

Worker's rights attorney now moving into "good governance" litigation. North Vice Chair of Democratic Party of Orange County and occasional candidate. Proud to be prolix. Unless otherwise specifically stated, his writings never speak for the Democratic Party at the local, county, state, national, or galactic level. He tries to either suppress or openly acknowledge his partisan, issue, ideological, and "good government" biases in most of his writing here. If you have a question about any particular writing, just ask him about it and (unless you are an pseudonymous troll) he will probably answer you at painful length. He lives in Brea but generally doesn't blog about it. A family member works as a campaign treasurer for Wendy Gabriella in AD-73; he doesn't directly profit from that relatively small compensation and it doesn't affect his coverage. He does advise some campaigns informally and without compensation, although in 2014 he may receive some compensation for campaign consulting and fundraising for the campaign of Jorge Lopez for Orange County Assessor.