6.7 quake rattles off Vancouver Island

6.7 earthquake rattles area off northern Vancouver Island; no tsunami expected

  • Apr. 23, 2014 8:00 p.m.

By The Canadian Press

PORT HARDY, B.C. – Glass rattled, buildings swayed, but no damage was reported after a magnitude 6.7 earthquake hit off the northern coast of Vancouver Island on Wednesday night.

The U.S. Geological Survey reported that the epicentre was about 94 kilometres south of Port Hardy and struck at a depth of 11 kilometres.

The agency also said three more earthquakes followed. The first was magnitude 5.0 and the next two both measured 4.2.

Emergency Management B.C. reported there was no tsunami warning for the West Coast, including B.C., and the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre said a destructive Pacific-wide tsunami was not expected.

“We can confirm at this time that there is no reporting of any injuries or any significant damage, so all folks are safe,” said Pat Quealey, assistant deputy minister for Emergency Management BC.

He said emergency-preparedness officials were contacted in communities on the Island’s north end.

He said those communities included Port Hardy, Port Alice, Zeballos, Gold River, Campbell River, Port McNeill, as well as the Strathcona Regional District and the Mount Waddington Regional District.

Port Hardy Mayor Bev Parnham said Lt.-Gov. Judith Guichon was greeting seniors at the Quatse Salmon Stewardship Centre, an interpretive centre and fish hatchery, when the earthquake hit.

“Somebody said, ‘oh earthquake,’ and of course we then all felt it, and you definitely knew you were in an earthquake,” said Parnham.

“I don’t think there was even enough time to really comprehend because it was very short, like it was strong but it was very short, short lived, and I think by the time it actually registered in your mind, this is what was happening, you know, it was over.”

She said there was no panic, people remained calm, and after the quake ended she left to ensure none of the community’s infrastructure was damaged. She said public-works officials even went out to check.

“I think that the honourable lieutenant-governor will remember Port Hardy,” said Parnham.

Pamela Shea was working the evening shift at the Airport Inn in Port Hardy and said she felt the quake hit at about 8:10 p.m. and the rolling motion caused by the quake was “pretty scary.”

“Oh goodness, yes. Oh goodness, yes,” she repeated when asked if she felt the quake. “My chair was rolling back and forth, the bottles were rattling.”

Shea said it only last about 10 to 12 seconds, “but it sure felt like it was a long time.”

“I’ve lived here 37 years and I’ve never felt anything like it.”

Ann Gray, the manager of the Glen Lyon Inn, said she barely felt it but knows people who did.

“I was sitting here, my chair moved abut two seconds, three seconds, the wall creaked a little bit, but it didn’t move us very much,” she said.

She said some of guests asked if they had to be evacuated.

Earthquakes are common off the B.C. coast, where the Juan de Fuca tectonic plate meets the Pacific tectonic plate, but few are large enough to be felt by humans.

The most recent large quake was in October 2012, when a magnitude 7.8 quake shook the northern B.C. Haida Gwaii Islands. There was little damage and no tsunami was generated in that quake.

— by Keven Drews and Terri Theodore in Vancouver

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Victoria police are investigating after a person broke into and stole a vehicle from a Douglas Street car dealership on the morning of March 3. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Suspect sought after vehicle swiped from Victoria dealership

Suspect broke into Douglas Street dealership shortly before 5 a.m.

Cleanup happens after an overnight flood Monday damaged areas of the Oaklands Community Centre. (Facebook/Oaklands Community Association)
Greater Victorians offer flood of support to Oaklands Community Centre

Blown hot water tank Monday night leaves staff cleaning up soggy mess

Const. Mat Jones of the CRD Integrated Road Safety Unit joined a team of Saanich police officers and ICBC representatives cracking down on distracted driving at the McKenzie/Quadra intersection in Saanich on March 3. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
‘Leave the phone alone’: 40 distracted driving tickets issued in two hours at Saanich intersection

Saanich police, CRD Integrated Road Safety Unit crackdown on drivers’ cell-phone use

Victoria Police Department vehicle outside the headquarters building. VicPD (Black Press Media file photo)
Man arrested after Victoria restaurant worker punched, thrown to the ground

Police say woman was found lying on the sidewalk with non-life threatening injuries

This was the scene outside North Saanich’s Parkland Secondary School after an attempted but unsuccessful break-and-enter into the school torched an ATM inside of it. Sidney/North Saanich RCMP did not make any arrests and currently lack suspects as the investigation continues. Members of the public who may have witnessed something or possess other information can contact police at (250) 656-3931 or to Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS. (Submitted)
ATM at North Saanich high school torched during early morning break-and-enter

Police dogs searched the exterior and interior of the school

Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding COVID-19 for British Columbia in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
7 additional deaths and 542 new COVID-19 cases in B.C.

Provincial health officials reported 18 new COVID-19 cases linked to variants of concern

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of March 2

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(Black Press Media file photo)
POLL: How’s your butter?

Recent reports have some Canadians giving a second look to one of… Continue reading

Chief Justice Christopher Hinkson (Office of the Chief Justice)
Judge questions whether B.C.’s top doctor appreciated right to religious freedom

Lawyer for province says Dr. Henry has outlined the reasons for her orders publicly

A sample of guns seized at the Pacific Highway border crossing from the U.S. into B.C. in 2014. Guns smuggled from the U.S. are used in criminal activity, often associated with drug gangs. (Canada Border Service Agency)
B.C. moves to seize vehicles transporting illegal firearms

Bill bans sale of imitation or BB guns to young people

The City of Duncan will implement a new pilot project targeting vandalism this spring. (File photo)
Graffiti trouble? Duncan will give you the brush and the paint to remove it

Intiative based on a successful project to protect Port Alberni from unwanted spray paint

BC Housing minister David Eby is concerned that Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter will result in a “tent city” similar to this one in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / Black Press file)
‘Disappointed and baffled’ B.C. housing minister warns of tent city in Penticton

Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter could create tent city, says David Eby

The first of Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s long-range maritime patrol aircraft—the Dash-8—becomes operational. (Photo supplied by PAL Aerospace)
Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s new De Havilland Dash-8-100 long-range surveillance air craft is capable of staying aloft for eight to 10 hours for a variety of missions up and down the B.C. coast. (Photo supplied by PAL Aerospace)
New plane will double DFO’s surveillance capacity in B.C.

The Dash-8 will fly out of Campbell River for enforcement, conservation missions

A recently published study out of UBC has found a link between life satisfaction levels and overall health. (Pixabay)
Satisfied with life? It’s likely you’re healthier for it: UBC study

UBC psychologists have found those more satisfied with their life have a 26% reduced risk of dying

Most Read