Oklahoma Shaken by More Than a Dozen Earthquakes Since Monday Morning
Since Monday morning’s 4.7 magnitude earthquake near Medford, the U.S. Geological Survey has recorded more than a dozen earthquakes 2.5 magnitude or greater in Oklahoma.
Several have been near the location of the bigger quake. USGS Seismologist George Choy said those are aftershocks.
"Usually, when an earthquake occurs, it relieves stress on a fault, but it transmits stress to the edges of a fault," Choy said. "And where that new stress is accumulated, you could have additional earthquakes."
All those earthquakes aren’t necessarily a sign the big one is coming.
"It's not as if they were in one particular place and something we would be concerned about something big building up, but it is very difficult to forecast how big an earthquake can be," Choy said.
The recent earthquakes have all been in central and northern Oklahoma. Oklahoma had 585 earthquakes last year and more than 600 so far this year.
"A few years ago, we'd have said it was uncommon," Choy said. "But now, there has been a sudden up surge in this activity."
Monday’s 4.7 magnitude earthquake and a Nov. 19 earthquake near Cherokee tied for the state’s biggest since 2011. Oklahoma’s largest recorded earthquake was a 5.8 near Prague in 2011.