USGS: Five earthquakes rattle area near Great Smoky park

Published 7:47 am Thursday, February 13, 2020

GATLINBURG (AP) — Five small earthquakes rattled an area near the Great Smoky Mountain National Park in east Tennessee, the U.S. Geological Survey reported Tuesday.

The first quake registered at 2:48 a.m. and the last was reported at 6:56 a.m., The News & Observer of Raleigh reported, citing USGS data, which also said all five were small, between magnitude 1.3 and 1.7.

The earthquake swarm hit in a small area about 25 miles (40 kilometers) southwest of Knoxville, Tennessee, near the North Carolina border. They were likely too small to be felt by people in the area, the agency said.

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“Earthquakes too small to cause damage are felt about once a year. Earthquakes too small to be felt are abundant in the seismic zone, and seismographs have recorded hundreds of them in recent decades,” the USGS said.