After major temblors on July 4 and 5, structural engineers descended on Ridgecrest expecting to study destruction from the largest earthquake to hit Southern California in nearly 20 years.
They found relatively little.
Yes, mobile homes were torn off foundations, chimneys fell, gas lines leaked and some homes caught fire. But overall, most buildings did fine — and many businesses were up and running within a day or two of the biggest shock, a magnitude 7.1.
“Ridgecrest, I’m just amazed,” California Earthquake Authority structural engineer Janiele Maffei said of the light damage.
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