Utah officials: Rumors of another bigger quake are false

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People gather on the sidewalk after a partial building collapse following an earthquake Wednesday, March 18, 2020, in Salt Lake City. A 5.7-magnitude earthquake has shaken the city and many of its suburbs. The quake sent panicked residents running to the streets, knocked out power to tens of thousands of homes and closed the city’s airport and its light rail system.  (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News)- A 5.7 earthquake shook the Salt Lake Wednesday morning. Now people are wondering if a bigger is one imminent. Rumors are circulating on social media. Although anything can happen, Utah officials say this rumor is not true.

Multiple state agencies are taking to social media to dispel the rumors.

“The rumor of an imminent larger earthquake is incorrect. While anything is possible, it’s unlikely. Our experts, along with experts from United States Geological Survey, indicate the probability of another 5.0 magnitude earthquake in the next week is relatively low,” said Utah Division of Natural Resources on Twitter.

The University of Utah Seismograph Stations asserted that there is “no scientific method for predicting the precise time, location, and magnitude of future earthquakes.”

The Utah Division of Emergency Management shared additional information to dispel other rumors floating around associated with Wednesday’s quake.

Myth: Officials are predicting a larger earthquake in the next 30 minutes.
Fact: Earthquakes cannot be predicted. However, we are 95 percent certain that the earthquake this morning was the main quake.

Myth: Officials (FEMA) are telling people to evacuate
Fact: They are not. This was a strong earthquake but see actual sources above. We expect to see some damage, but we will get through this

Myth: Shut off your natural gas
Fact: Only shut it off if you hear or smell gas escaping. 

Myth: Get in a doorway.
Fact: It’s better to get under a table or desk.  

The area around the earthquake is experiencing aftershocks, these could go on for several days. If you want to see what happened with the initial quake and aftershocks the University of Utah has a map.

In emergencies like this, it’s important everyone stays calm and only share information from trusted sources.

Please use sites like ABC4.com, and those provided by the State and other community agencies to double-check information you may receive through social media.

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