Did the earth move for you? Small earthquake registered in Kurzeme, Latvia

The only seismological station in Latvia recorded ground vibrations in Kurzeme on Tuesday morning, Viesturs Zandersons, a researcher and seismologist at the University of Latvia, told LSM.LV.

According to the latest public observations, a seismic event was also observed at the Slītere observation station today at 11:40 a.m. Latvian time. In Latvia, seismological monitoring is carried out at one station, Slītere, but observations are also compared at stations in Estonia, Lithuania, Finland, Poland and Denmark. The event in question was clearly recorded at only one observation station, Slītere, but more precise information on the location of the event can only be obtained after a more in-depth analysis of the data.

It is now clear that the earthquake if it occurred, was of local magnitude, as only one observation station showed signs of it. Consequently, the magnitude of the expected event is likely to be below 3, which means that there would be no damage to buildings or infrastructure associated with the earthquake.

The ground motions observed in Latvia are usually small-scale, related to human activities such as military exercises. The last natural earthquake in the Baltic region was recorded in 2022 in northern Estonia with a magnitude of 2.3. Natural earthquakes in the region rarely exceed magnitude 3.

Shortly after 11 a.m., residents started reporting vibrations of the ground, buildings, and objects in Liepaja and South Kurzeme Region on social media. In Saldus, residents also heard a hollow sound that lasted a few seconds.

The strongest earthquake in Latvia this century occurred on October 21, 2004, when two moderate earthquakes were recorded near the Kaliningrad-Poland borders. The earthquake was also well felt in Latvia.

Underground tremors were felt throughout Kaliningrad, north-eastern Poland and also in the Baltic States. In Poland, at least one building was damaged by ground shaking.

"This is a unique phenomenon for our latitudes," said Māris Segliņš, Director of the State Geological Survey, in an interview with Latvian Radio at the time.

He noted that two epicentres of underground tremors had been identified in the Kaliningrad region: shortly after 10 a.m., the earthquake was more than five on the Richter scale, and at 12.40 p.m. it was 5.2.

Seen a mistake?

Select text and press Ctrl+Enter to send a suggested correction to the editor

Select text and press Report a mistake to send a suggested correction to the editor

Related articles


Most important