Minor earthquake recorded near Warsaw, N.Y., says USGS

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WARSAW N.Y. (WHEC) — The United States Geological Survey reported a minor earthquake at 11:30 a.m. near Warsaw, Wyoming County, which is about 39 miles southwest of Rochester.

The average magnitude was 2.6, meaning that people can feel it but it’s unlikely to cause damage.

The earthquake was one of six that the USGS recorded in the lower 48 states on Tuesday. A magnitude of 5.5 is typically the minimum needed to cause damage to buildings.

We know that earthquakes are relatively uncommon to even rare in New York State.

The actual depth of the earthquake was about three miles down. We average millions of these low magnitude earthquakes across the globe in a given year.

It was felt in places like the communities of Perry, Nunda and Varrysburg. Fortunately, there was no damage across the year the area.

It is interesting when you look at the magnitude scale and how it plays out if you go through the intensity. Again, this is a range where most of the earthquakes occur between a two or a three on the magnitude scale. Then it goes up and to the range of a five or six magnitude and that is when you have the greatest potential of getting some structural damage. Once you increase into the range of seven or eight it can be devastating.

Interesting to know that the Richter scale is no longer used. It is now called the moment movement scale. That is a device that is a little more sensitive to measuring these earthquakes.