An earthquake with a magnitude of 4.4 struck 6 miles northwest of Beverly Hills around 6:25 a.m. Monday, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. It had a depth of about 5 miles.
At least 6 aftershocks have been reported since the initial earthquake, seismologist Egil Hauksson said during a news conference at Caltech shortly after 8:30 a.m.
The biggest of those aftershocks was 2.7., the USGS reported.
More aftershocks could be expected, according to Robert Graves, a seismologist with the USGS.
Graves said it was also possible that the earthquake could be a “foreshock” to a larger earthquake.
“About 5 percent of earthquakes are followed by a larger or similar magnitude earthquake,” he said.
Viewers have reported feeling the earthquake in Arcadia, Riverside, Montebello, Sherman Oaks, Simi Valley and Fillmore.
A number of people said the quake woke them up.
“It was a wake-up call,” said one mother who also experienced the Northridge quake in 1994. “My kids felt it a little, but nothing like the Northridge earthquake. That was so much more frightening than the one this morning.”
The earthquake was felt strongly at KTLA’s studio in Hollywood, sending morning show anchors Chris Schauble and Megan Henderson ducking for cover beneath their desk during the broadcast.
“I was very proud to see the KTLA anchors going under their desk during the earthquake, that was absolutely the right thing to do,” said Dr. Lucy Jones, a seismologist with the U.S. Geological Survey.
“People who are laughing at them for doing it, you don’t know at the beginning how big an earthquake’s going to be,” Jones said. “You might feel a little silly doing it for the small ones, but when the big one happens, it means you stay alive after the lights come crashing down.”
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department used the earthquake to remind everyone of the importance of being prepared in the event of emergencies. A tweet from the department shortly after the quake linked to the county’s disaster preparedness website.
Click here for the Red Cross’ Prepare SoCal website.
Some were taking that warning seriously.
“We really need to update our earthquake kits. So today I think we’ll be doing some research on updating all of our earthquake kits,” said one woman who was out walking with a friend when the temblor struck.
No major damages or injuries were immediately reported, according to the L.A. Fire Department.
The quake was the most significant to shake the Los Angeles area since a temblor struck Chino Hills in 2008, according to Graves.
That quake had a magnitude of 5.5, according to the USGS.
Some viewers tweeted pictures of minor damages from the quake, including broken plates and flower pots.
— Jon Ernst (@TheRealJonErnst) March 17, 2014