Swarm of Earthquakes Hits Truckee Area

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TRUCKEE --  "I felt a substantial movement like an earthquake."

Chris Arth says she was asleep when a 3.0 magnitude earthquake hit the Truckee area just after 2 a.m. Tuesday. She says she mentally braced for another to follow.

"I thought 'OK what happens if a bigger one comes next?' So I was picturing myself running into my closet and grabbing a robe and finding a safe place to stand," Arth said.

More quakes did come -- 42 of them in total. Fortunately, the rest weren't as intense.

Frank Rossbach has lived in Truckee for 35 years. He says his experience tipped him off to what rattled him early this morning.

"I did know right away it was an earthquake," he said.

The epicenter of this particular swarm hit about 10 miles north of Truckee along what geology experts call the "Walker Lane Zone."

"This is the Truckee area right here, and this is where we have the swarm," said Geologist John Parrish.

Back in Sacramento, Parrish monitored the quakes as they came before stopping at 11:45 a.m.

Parrish says the series of earthquakes Tuesday are considered shallow quakes and that's why they're felt here even when the magnitude was under 4.0.

"If they were deeper or further away, people probably wouldn't even notice them -- but they are not of the damaging variety, we would have to get up to the magnitude of about 5.0 before we start seeing minor damage," he said.