The quakes are centered 8 miles northeast of Virginia City and being felt by people in Reno. Swarms like this are not uncommon. But, this week the intensity increased from one-plus-magnitude to over three. Ken Smith of the Nevada Seismological Laboratory at the University of Nevada Reno says, that is cause for concern.
“It wouldn’t be unusual to see a large earthquake out of a sequence like this,” Smith said.
The land near Virginia City is like swiss cheese because of mining history in the area. The buildings are also old, un-reinforced masonry. Smith says a magnitude-five quake could cause damage and people should prepare emergency plans and supply kits just in case.
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