Pixel Tracker

Thursday, January 17 , 2019, 5:54 pm | Fog/Mist 59º


Baja Earthquake Makes Splash in Santa Barbara

7.2-magnitude quake causes no damage or injuries locally, but sets off wave of action in pools

A 7.2-magnitude earthquake shook up much of Southern California and northern Baja on Sunday afternoon, but went largely unnoticed in Santa Barbara. Except on More Mesa, where one resident quickly videotaped the shock waves in his pool.

The quake struck at 3:40 p.m. Sunday, in Guadalupe Victoria about 108 miles east of Tijuana. Preliminary reports estimated the magnitude at 6.9, but Caltech seismologists later raised the number to 7.2. The U.S. Geological Survey said three strong aftershocks — one a magnitude 5.1 — were felt in the Imperial County desert east of San Diego within an hour after the main temblor, and a magnitude-4.1 aftershock occurred in Santa Monica Bay south of Malibu.

At least one death was reported, just outside the sprawling border city of Mexicali, when a house collapsed and killed a man inside. A two-story parking garage also collapsed and several homes were gutted by fire caused by the quake, officials said.

There were no immediate reports of injuries north of the border but the earthquake caused skyscrapers to sway in Los Angeles and San Diego. Disneyland officials temporarily closed rides at the Anaheim theme park and public-safety agencies were checking bridges and buildings for possible structural damage throughout Southern California.

In Santa Barbara, Glenn Avolio, a resident of More Mesa, said he and his wife, Rosa, hardly felt the quake, “but the pool sure did!”

“The pool wave lasted about five to 10 minutes,” he said in an e-mail to Noozhawk, including a video as proof.

(Glenn Avolio video)

Despite the onshore wave action, the West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center said the quake was unlikely to trigger a tsunami.

“A strong earthquake has occurred, but a tsunami is not expected along the California, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia or Alaska coast,” the center, an agency of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, said in a statement. “No tsunami warning, watch or advisory is in effect for these areas.”

On Feb. 27, a small tsunami tide surged into Santa Barbara Harbor within hours of a deadly 8.8-magnitude quake that rocked central Chile. There were no damage or injuries locally.

Noozhawk publisher Bill Macfadyen can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.