UK earthquake: was there an earthquake in Wales? How powerful was it, where was it, was it felt in England

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Earthquake was felt in Wales and the tremors reached as far as Birmingham

Children were left “scared” after a 3.7 magnitude earthquake rocked South Wales overnight.

Residents reported hearing a “big bang” as flats and houses were “shaken” by the tremor. It hit several miles north of the Rhodda Valley at 11.59pm on Friday (24 February).

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The British Geological Survey reports that the earthquake had a depth of 3km and a magnitude of 3.7. The epicentre was the market town of Brynmawr in Gwent, north of Cardiff and Newport.

One resident in Wales said: “I was sat watching tv. Suddenly there was a loud bang,my dogs jumped up. I jumped up and there was another bang almost instantly. I ran and called to my husband who was upstairs. I thought he had collapsed and fallen to the floor. He was asleep and didn't feel a thing. My neighbours were out in the street as they all felt it as well.”

Here is all you need to know:

Was there an earthquake in Wales?

The British Geological Survey and the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre have both recorded the earthquake in South Wales on Friday night. It happened at 11.59pm and the effects could be felt as Saturday (25 February) began.

How powerful was the earthquake?

The quake had a magnitude of 3.7 on the Richter scale, according to the British Geological Survey. It had a depth of 3km.

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On the Richter scale it is considered a “minor” earthquake, which is the second lowest level. A quake that registers between 3 and 3.9 on the scale is often felt by people but rarely causes damage, but indoor objects can shake.

A earthquake of a magnitude similar to the one felt in Wales between 24 and 25 February happens around 100,000 per year across the globe. The most powerful earthquakes on the scale, magnitude 9 and above, are only seen once every 10 to 50 years.

The strongest quake recorded in the UK happened on 7 June 1931 in the North Sea and had a magnitude of 6.1 - the epicentre was offshore in the Dogger Bank area. It is considered a “strong” earthquake on the Richter scale.

The earthquake was felt in Ebbw Vale, South Wales. Picture: GEOFF CADDICK/AFP via Getty ImagesThe earthquake was felt in Ebbw Vale, South Wales. Picture: GEOFF CADDICK/AFP via Getty Images
The earthquake was felt in Ebbw Vale, South Wales. Picture: GEOFF CADDICK/AFP via Getty Images | GEOFF CADDICK/AFP via Getty Images

Where was the Wales earthquake felt?

The epicentre, according to British Geological Survey, was in Brynmawr, Gwent, a few miles north of the Rhodda Valley. But the quake was felt miles away from the town.

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On the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre’s website, people have reported feeling the tremor in the following areas:

  • Tredegar, Blaenau Gwent
  • Glynebwy, Blaenau Gwent
  • Bargoed, Rhymney Valley
  • Rhymney, Caerphilly
  • Merthyr Tydfil
  • Ebbow Vale, Blaenau Gwent
  • Pentrebach, Merthyr Tydfil
  • Abercanaid, Merthyr Tydfil
  • Brynmawr, Blaenau Gwent
  • Deri, Caerphilly
  • Llangynidr, Pows
  • Blaina, Blaenau Gwent
  • Clydach, Swansea
  • Aberdare, Cynon Valley
  • Mountain Ash, Cynon Valley
  • Abertillery, Ebbw Fach
  • Hirwaun, Cynon Valley
  • Crickhowell, Pows
  • Blaenavon, Torfean
  • Pengam, Rhymney Valley
  • Blackwood, Carephilly
  • Hengoed, Rhymney Valley
  • Brecon, Pows
  • Llwynypia, Rhondda Cynon Taf
  • Pontypool, Torfean
  • Newport
  • Abergavenny, Monmouthshire
  • Crosskeys, Carephilly
  • Talgarth, Pows
  • Cardiff
  • Bridgend

Was it felt in England?

The earthquake largely effected South Wales, including being felt in the likes of Newport and Wales as well as the surrounding valleys. But according to British Geological Survey, the tremor was also felt in parts of England.

A resident in Hopwood, Worcestershire said: “I was lying in bed and felt the bed shake and my wardrobe mirror was wobbling.” It was also felt by residents in Wolverhampton and Birmingham.

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