After three days of unexplained booms and vibrations, the people of Clintonville, Wisconsin may just have an explanation as to what’s been going on.
The U.S. Geological Survey has confirmed that a 1.5-magnitude earthquake struck the Waupaca County area on Tuesday at 12:15 a.m. local time.
Clintonville City Administrator Lisa Kuss said yesterday that “the mystery is solved.” She says the rumbling can easily be explained by the “microquake” that hit earlier in the week.
She says officials with the USGS attribute the commotion to a swarm of small earthquakes that hit within a very short time.
The strange rumblings were first heard and felt on Sunday night. They intensified on Monday morning and carried on into Tuesday.
Overall, Clintonville police dispatch says it’s answered more than 600 phone calls about the mysterious booms.
Paul Caruso, a geophysicist with the USGS, says they’re now looking into whether the other booms and shakes in Clintonville were also earthquake-realted. However, he says even if more quakes are found, the 1.5-magnitude quake will most likely be the largest.
Caruso said it was the smallest earthquake he’d ever heard of that was actually felt. He added that earthquakes like this one are commonplace in California, but people don’t feel them.
Caruso attributes it to the fact that the rock in Wisconsin is old and well consolidated. He says the 1.5-magnitude quake would have likely only been felt within a few blocks around the epicenter.
“Our seismometers did not detect it initially, so we got reports that people felt something and we went back and looked at the data from that time and in that place and we finally were able to get enough data together to locate the earthquake. It was very small and very hard to locate,” said Caruso.
So does this explain the booms and shakes people felt days before and after the minor quake?
“There may have been additional quakes and we are looking into that right now, trying to locate those if there were additional quakes,” Caruso replied.
What do you think? Does this explain the strange underground rumblings in Wisconsin?
More in the video below.
- USGS: Micro-quake near Wis. city bothered by booms (newsok.com)
- Town May Have Explanation For Mysterious Booms (fox2now.com)