6.7 quake rattles off Vancouver Island

6.7 earthquake rattles area off northern Vancouver Island; no tsunami expected

  • Apr. 23, 2014 4:00 p.m.

By The Canadian Press

PORT HARDY, B.C. – Glass rattled, buildings swayed, but no damage was reported after a magnitude 6.7 earthquake hit off the northern coast of Vancouver Island on Wednesday night.

The U.S. Geological Survey reported that the epicentre was about 94 kilometres south of Port Hardy and struck at a depth of 11 kilometres.

The agency also said three more earthquakes followed. The first was magnitude 5.0 and the next two both measured 4.2.

Emergency Management B.C. reported there was no tsunami warning for the West Coast, including B.C., and the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre said a destructive Pacific-wide tsunami was not expected.

“We can confirm at this time that there is no reporting of any injuries or any significant damage, so all folks are safe,” said Pat Quealey, assistant deputy minister for Emergency Management BC.

He said emergency-preparedness officials were contacted in communities on the Island’s north end.

He said those communities included Port Hardy, Port Alice, Zeballos, Gold River, Campbell River, Port McNeill, as well as the Strathcona Regional District and the Mount Waddington Regional District.

Port Hardy Mayor Bev Parnham said Lt.-Gov. Judith Guichon was greeting seniors at the Quatse Salmon Stewardship Centre, an interpretive centre and fish hatchery, when the earthquake hit.

“Somebody said, ‘oh earthquake,’ and of course we then all felt it, and you definitely knew you were in an earthquake,” said Parnham.

“I don’t think there was even enough time to really comprehend because it was very short, like it was strong but it was very short, short lived, and I think by the time it actually registered in your mind, this is what was happening, you know, it was over.”

She said there was no panic, people remained calm, and after the quake ended she left to ensure none of the community’s infrastructure was damaged. She said public-works officials even went out to check.

“I think that the honourable lieutenant-governor will remember Port Hardy,” said Parnham.

Pamela Shea was working the evening shift at the Airport Inn in Port Hardy and said she felt the quake hit at about 8:10 p.m. and the rolling motion caused by the quake was “pretty scary.”

“Oh goodness, yes. Oh goodness, yes,” she repeated when asked if she felt the quake. “My chair was rolling back and forth, the bottles were rattling.”

Shea said it only last about 10 to 12 seconds, “but it sure felt like it was a long time.”

“I’ve lived here 37 years and I’ve never felt anything like it.”

Ann Gray, the manager of the Glen Lyon Inn, said she barely felt it but knows people who did.

“I was sitting here, my chair moved abut two seconds, three seconds, the wall creaked a little bit, but it didn’t move us very much,” she said.

She said some of guests asked if they had to be evacuated.

Earthquakes are common off the B.C. coast, where the Juan de Fuca tectonic plate meets the Pacific tectonic plate, but few are large enough to be felt by humans.

The most recent large quake was in October 2012, when a magnitude 7.8 quake shook the northern B.C. Haida Gwaii Islands. There was little damage and no tsunami was generated in that quake.

— by Keven Drews and Terri Theodore in Vancouver

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

BC Hydro is reporting several outages in Sooke Monday morning. (BC Hydro/Facebook)
Victoria police issued tickets to two Victoria party hosts Saturday night, according to VicPD Chief Del Manak. (Unsplash)
Victoria partiers hid in closets, bedrooms in an attempt to avoid fines

Police gave out COVID-19 tickets to two separate parties

A wind warning is in effect for Greater Victoria Monday morning. (Black Press Media file photo)
Strong wind whips Greater Victoria

Winds predicted to subside by Monday afternoon

Island Health has confirmed the first long term care facility outbreak in Greater Victoria at Veterans Memorial Lodge in Saanich. (Google Maps)
Island Health records first long-term care COVID outbreak in Greater Victoria

Veterans Memorial Lodge in Saanich confirms one positive staff member

A bus shelter in White Rock is emblazoned with an ad from B.C.’s Office of the Human Rights Commissioner on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. (Black Press Media files)
VIDEO: ‘Am I racist?’ campaign asks British Columbians to confront their unconscious biases

Signs asking British Columbians to think about racial injustice have been put up across the province

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond speaks to a reporter in Vancouver on November 13, 2015. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
No evidence that B.C. ER staff played blood alcohol level game, but Indigenous racism widespread

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond releases findings of independent investigation

The Nov. 20 WestJet flight 3171 has been identified by the BC Centre for Disease Control with a COVID case aboard. (Black Press file photo)
Fifth COVID-19 exposure reported on flight at Comox airport

Another exposure risk from flight originating in Calgary

(Dave Landine/Facebook)
VIDEO: Dashcam captures head-on crash between snowplow and truck on northern B.C. highway

Driver posted to social media that he walked away largely unscathed

Menno Place. (Google Street View image.)
B.C. care home looks to hire residents’ family members amid COVID-19-related staff shortage

Family would get paid as temporary workers, while having chance to see loved ones while wearing PPE

B.C. Finance Minister Carole James and Premier John Horgan announce $5 billion emergency fund for COVID-19 unemployment and other relief, B.C. legislature, March 23, 2020. (B.C. government)
Carole James stays on to advise B.C. Premier John Horgan

Retired finance minister to earn a dollar a year

Langley RCMP issued a $2,300 fine to the Riverside Calvary church in Langley in the 9600 block of 201 Street for holding an in-person service on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, despite a provincial COVID-19 related ban (Dan Ferguson/Black Press Media)
Langley church fined for holding in-person Sunday service

Calvary church was fined $2,300 for defying provincial order

A pedestrian makes their way through the snow in downtown Ottawa on Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Wild winter, drastic swings in store for Canada this year: Weather Network

In British Columbia and the Prairies, forecasters are calling for above-average snowfall levels

Most Read