Recent Earthquakes in Allegheny County Pennsylvania and Future Probabilities

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Allegheny County Pennsylvania is situated in the western part of the state. It is a low-risk area for earthquakes.

The probability of 5.0 magnitude or above earthquakes within the next 50 years within 50km of Allegheny County is 0.48%.


Allegheny County Pennsylvania is situated in the western part of the state. It is a low-risk area for earthquakes. 

✔ Earthquake Risk: Very Low
✔ Chance of Heavy Earthquake: The probability of an earthquake above 7.3 Magnitude is almost 0.
✔ Total Number of Earthquakes above 5.0 Magnitude in Allegheny County since 1931: 0
✔ Probability of A 5.0 Magnitude Earthquake within the next 50 years, within 50km of Allegheny County: 0.48%
MagnitudeProbability for the upcoming 50 years


  1. Number of Earthquakes in Pennsylvania in 2022  

✔ In 2022, Pennsylvania had eight earthquakes of magnitude 2.0 or high.

✔ 3 earthquakes occurred below magnitude 2.0, which many people don’t feel.



  2. Significant Earthquakes in Allegheny County Pennsylvania  

Since 1900, Allegheny County has felt one quake of magnitude 5.0; 6 quakes between 4.0 and 5.0; 25 quakes between 3.0 and 4.0, and 74 quakes between 2.0 and 3.0. There have also been 16 earthquakes below magnitude 2.0 which many people overlook.

Number of Earthquakes since 1900;

Quake of magnitude 5.01
Quakes between 4.0 and 5.06
Quakes between 3.0 and 4.025
Quakes between 2.0 and 3.074
Earthquakes below magnitude 2.016


Read Also: History of Earthquakes



  3. Places To Hide During Earthquake for Allegheny County Residents  

Big Earthquakes in Allegheny County Pennsylvania are almost impossible. But to make you aware of the earthquake, some of the places that are comparatively safer to hide during an earthquake are summarized below:


i. Tables and Study Desks

In general, the safety guidelines for earthquakes claim practising “Drop, Cover and Hold” is very efficient in preventing casualties.

What to do during an earthquake?

✔ The safest place to practice this is hiding under a study desk or table during an earthquake.

✔ Taking shelter under a table or desk during an earthquake can protect a person from the structure’s falling counterparts and debris.

Tables and study desks act as protective covers.

However, there always exists a risk of the table being broken, but it can still reduce the impact of the falling debris.


ii. Room Without Windows

During an earthquake, there is an increased risk of injury from falling broken glass and windows.

Thus, as long as the shaking persists, it is safer to hide inside a room with no windows.

Generally, such rooms comprise the middle rooms or halls of the house. It is better to store emergency first aid kits in rooms that can be easily accessible during the emergency.


iii. Bed or Closet

If a person is on the bed when an earthquake strikes, they must stay on it.

The person must grab a pillow and cover their head and neck region to prevent injury from falling debris.

It is also necessary to ensure that the closet is free from any hazardous material that may pose a risk during the shaking of the house during an earthquake.

Places To Hide During Earthquake


iv. Door frame (as a shelter during the earthquake)

The door frame is not the safest place to be during an earthquake.

But, it can be used as a shelter during the shaking when no other alternative seems feasible.

You must ensure that door frames have been constructed with adequate strength to withstand the falling debris load.

Places To Hide During Earthquake


v. Outside Open Spaces

If a person is outside the buildings during an earthquake, they must immediately run to open space.

They must watch for power lines, boundary walls, and falling trees.

The open space must be such that there is no possibility of getting injured by falling debris.



  4. What to do during an earthquake?  

Some of the things that you must consider during an earthquake can be summarized as follows:


A. When one is indoors during an earthquake:  

You must do the following things if a person is indoors during an earthquake:

a. The person must drop to the ground first.

Then, You must look for a safe place, such as a table or desk, and the person must hide under it and hold on until the tremors subside.

If such furniture isn’t available, they must cover their head and faces with their arms and stay crouched in any corner of the building.

The safety keywords include “DROP, COVER & HOLD ON“.

What to do during an earthquake?

b. It is safer to avoid components of the building that are prone to fall, such as glasses, windows, exterior walls, lighting fixtures, etc.

c. If a person is on the bed when an earthquake strikes, they must stay on the bed and cover their head with a pillow if there is no heavy lighting fixture above the bed.

If there is a heavy lighting fixture above the bed, one must immediately find a safer place and hide.

d. The person must stay inside until the shaking completely stops.

It is dangerous to run outside the building while it is shaking, as in most cases, it has been found that most injuries occur while attempting to run outside the building during an earthquake.

e. The use of elevators must be avoided entirely as there is a high possibility of power shut down, trapping the person inside for long hours.

f. If a person is in a wheelchair when the earthquake strikes, they must immediately lock the wheels and protect the neck and head by covering them with their hands.


B. When one is outdoors during an earthquake:  

The following precautions must be taken when a person is outdoors during an earthquake:

a. The person must immediately move away from buildings, transmission lines, compound walls, street lights, and utility wires and move to a comparatively open space as soon as possible.

b. Once open space is sought, the person must stay there until the shaking stops.


C. When one is in a moving vehicle during an earthquake:  

The precautions that must be taken when a person is in a moving vehicle can be listed as follows:

a. You must stop the vehicle as far as possible, and one must stay inside it.

You must note that the vehicle is stopped away from massive structures, utility and transmission towers, trees, and overpasses.

b. The person must stay inside the vehicle until the shaking stops.

Proceeding through bridges and ramps as soon as the earthquake stops must be avoided as these structures may have been damaged due to the tremors.


D. When one is trapped in fallen debris:  

If a person happens to be trapped in the counterparts of structures that have collapsed during the earthquake, the following practices may be beneficial:

a. The person must remain calm and not move around or kick up the accumulated dust particles.

b. The mouth should be well covered by a handkerchief or clothing.

c. You must completely avoid the lighting of matchsticks or lighters.

d. To call for help and rescue, shouting must be kept as the last alternative as it may result in inhaling a large amount of dust, thereby causing choking and suffocation.

If available, You must blow whistles.

Tapping on the walls, pipelines, or nearby structures so rescuers can locate the person is also beneficial.

Read More: Earthquake-Proof Buildings


Read Also: Can Seismologists Predict Earthquakes?



  5. References  

1. Content Filter & Authenticity Checking Team, Dream Civil International

(Our team checks every content & detail to maintain quality. )

2. Research ( )  


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