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Although most earthquakes are unnoticeable in Ohio, there have been numerous quakes with a magnitude of 2.0 or higher over the last several years. Earthquakes in Ohio are primarily located the northeast and far west-central portions of the state and historically have not exceeded 5.4 magnitude. An earthquake results from a release of energy from the Earth creating seismic waves. Earthquakes are caused mostly by tectonic plate movement known as geologic faults, but also by volcanic activity and landslides. The seismic activity of an area refers to the frequency, type and size of earthquakes experienced over a period of time. The magnitude of an earthquake is measured by the Richter scale while the intensity is measured on the Mercalli scale. The most substantial known earthquake in Ohio history was the Anna (Shelby County) earthquake, (see here) which occurred on March 9, 1937. It was centered in western Ohi and had a magnitude of 5.4, and was of intensity VIII ( USGS historic description).

For more information, see the section on wildfires in the State Hazard Mitigation Plan: Section 2.9

Reference Links

Ohio Seismic Network (OhioSeis)

ODNR, Division of Geological Survey Ohio Seismic Network (OhioSeis) which consists of 25 cooperative, volunteer-operated seismic stations at colleges, universities, and other institutions across the state.

Earthquake Information Center

ODNR, Division of Geological Survey Ohio Earthquake Information Center.

Advanced National Seismic System (ANSS)

USGS Advanced National Seismic System (ANSS) providing accurate and timely data and information products for seismic events, including their effects on buildings and structures, employing modern monitoring methods and technologies.

QuakeSmart Toolkit

Provides actionable and scalable guidance and tools to the private sector, its owners, managers, and employees about the importance of earthquake mitigation and the simple things they can do to reduce the potential of earthquake damages, injuries, and financial losses.