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The southern California town of Brawley has taken the unusual step of declaring a state of emergency after a swarm of earthquakes rattled nearly 20 mobile homes off their blocks and forced a slaughterhouse to close, the mayor said on Wednesday.
USGS seismologist Lucy Jones said earthquake swarms are characteristic of the region, known as the Brawley Seismic Zone. 'The area sees lots of events at once, with many close to the largest magnitude, rather than one main shock with several much smaller aftershocks,' Mrs Jones said. 'It's relatively hot.' The last major swarm was in 2005, following a magnitude-5.1 quake, she said. Read more: www.dailymail.co.uk...
In August 2012 near Brawley, a swarm of more than 300 small to moderate earthquakes occurred with the largest two reaching a maximum of 5.3 and 5.5. Some light cosmetic damage was found on some older buildings in downtown Brawley. Earthquake swarms are not unusual for the area. In 2005, also near Brawley, there was a swarm with a peak magnitude of 5.1, while in 1981 a swarm included one quake which was measured at 5.8.