EARTHQUAKES IN US HISTORY
The 1906 San Francisco quake was the worst US death toll, although at least two other events were stronger in terms of the Richter scale. Here is a rundown of other major earthquakes in American history as recorded by the US Geological Survey:
New Madrid, Mo., was shaken by three quakes in 1811-12 estimated at 8.4 to 8.7 on the Richter scale, but damage and casualties were light because the region had a relatively small population at the time. These quakes were felt as far away as Boston and New York.
Prince William Sound, Alaska, was hit by a quake rated at 8.4 on the Richter scale, on March 27, 1984. In this century only one quake, in Chile in 1960, has been stronger. There were 131 deaths and extensive damage in Alaska.
On Nov. 18, 1867, the Virgin Islands were shaken by a magnitude 7.5 quake also felt in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. Waves as large as 20 feet were generated.
In the same area a 7.5 temblor shook the Mona passage near Puerto Rico on Oct. 11, 1918. Some 116 people died, many in the giant wave generated by the quake.
On Aug. 17, 1959, a quake rated at 7.3 struck Hebgen Lake, Mont., and was felt from Seattle to North Dakota to Utah. Extensive damage was reported and 28 people died.
Olympia, Wash., was struck by a 7.1 quake on April 13, 1949, killing eight people and causing extensive damage in Washington and Oregon.
There was a quake rated 7.0 at Borah Peak, Idaho, on Oct. 25, 1983. It was widely felt but only two people were killed.
Coalinga, Calif., was the focus of a 6.7 magnitude quake on May 2, 1983, injuring 45 people and causing $31 million in damage.
A quake measured at 6.4 also did severe damage to the San Fernando Valley of California on Feb. 9, 1971, killing 65 people.