RIDGECREST, Calif. — A powerful 7.1-magnitude earthquake swayed buildings and cracked foundations in Southern California on Friday night, sending terrified residents sleeping on the streets a day after another temblor hit.
The latest earthquake Friday struck 11 miles northeast of Ridgecrest, according to the US Geological Survey. It was five times bigger than Thursday's 6.4 -magnitude earthquake, also centered near Ridgecrest, CNN Meteorologist Brandon Miller said.
In Ridgecrest, multiple fires broke out Friday and several injuries were reported, according to Kern County spokeswoman Megan Person. The county has activated an emergency operations center, and nearly 2,000 people are without power, officials said.
The San Bernardino County Fire Department said it received multiple reports of damage as well from northwest communities.
"Homes shifted, foundation cracks, retaining walls down," the department said. "One injury (minor) with firefighters treating patient."
It Lasted Longer than Thursday's Earthquake
Bakersfield resident Giovanna Gomez was at home with her family when their house swayed and the water in her pool overflowed. They ran outside.
"It was about a minute long," she said. "Far larger than the one that (happened) yesterday. It was a smooth roll going back and forth."
Bakersfield is in Kern County about 110 miles from Ridgecrest. Donald Castle, who lives in Porterville west of Ridgecrest, said his house shook for nearly 25 seconds.
"It was more of a shake than what we had on the Fourth. It lasted longer and was more rolling," he said.
Calls for Medical Help
While there are no reports of major gas leaks or fatalities, there have been a lot of ambulance calls and medical aid calls, Kern County Fire Department Chief David Witt said.
In Los Angeles, about 150 miles away from Ridgecrest, residents felt the earth shake, but there were no reports of serious damage, Mayor Eric Garcetti said.
There were some wires down and localized power outages, the Los Angeles County Fire Department said. It said there was no major infrastructure damage, no deaths and no serious injuries reported.
Shaking Felt in Mexico and Las Vegas
The shaking was felt as far away as Mexico and Las Vegas, according to the USGS.
The NBA Summer League game between the New Orleans Pelicans and the New York Knicks in Las Vegas was postponed Friday following reports of the quake. Scoreboards and speakers near the ceiling of the arena shook when the earthquake hit.
Quakes are Part of an Ongoing System
CalTech seismologist Lucy Jones said Friday both earthquakes are part of an ongoing sequence, of a "very energetic system."
The latest 7.1-magnitude earthquake was the mainshock, while Thursday's 6.4-magnitude quake was a foreshock, according to Jones.
In addition to being bigger, Miller said it released more than 11 times the amount of energy than the 6.4 one.
Officials are not ruling out the possibilities of more earthquakes. California Gov. Gavin Newsom said he's activated the state emergency operation center to its highest level.
"The state is coordinating mutual aid to local first responders," he tweeted Friday night.