Please scroll down for updates, last one was at 10:21 PM PT

earthquake.jpg 2:57 PM: The Appeal “office,” as well as lots of local folks on Twitter, were just rocked by a very abrupt earthquake that the USGS says was a 3.8 magnitude.

The quake, which the USGS says hit the area at 2:57 PT, was centered 12 miles from SF City Hall, in the Pacifica/San Bruno area. The quake, the USGS says, has a depth of 13 km.

In the Outer Sunset, it felt like a sharp bump, and a quick shift east (if that makes sense.) Neither of my pets seemed to notice a thing. Clearly, they don’t know that today’s the 105th anniversary of San Francisco’s “Great Quake.”

Did you feel it? Then let the USGS know, and tell us what you felt in the comments.

3:12 PM: As is customary with earthquakes, BART service has been suspended while their tracks are inspected. If nothing untoward is discovered, service should resume in the next 10 minutes.

Appeal pal Sarah B. (of Richmond SF blog fame) says she definitely “felt it in downtown San Mateo.” She says she felt a “big jolt,” then 5-7 seconds of shaking.

3:32 PM: Bay City News is reporting that another, smaller quake followed the 3.8 magnitude one many of us in SF. At 3 PM, they say there was a second, smaller quake centered about 2 miles southwest of San Bruno with a magnitude of 1.4.

BART stopped its trains briefly to inspect the tracks after the first earthquake. Trains are running at normal speeds again but 10-minute delays are reported system-wide.

The first quake was felt in parts of the Bay Area including San Francisco and Oakland.
Thom Ball, library manager of the Pacifica Sharp Park Library, said he felt it.

“There was a sharp jolt that was preceded by a rumbling noise. That was it,” Ball said.

“No books fell off the shelves. No lights went off. We all just felt it,” he said.

Everyone seemed calm afterward, Ball said.

The quakes, BCN notes, occurred on the 105th anniversary of San Francisco’s Great Quake of 1906.

But of course, they’re not the only ones struck by the coincidence of the date: SFist described the event as a “minor anniversary nudge,” Mission Mission calls it “auspicious,” Spots Unknown thanks the “San Andreas Fault, for pitching in to help us all celebrate the Big One.”

4:21 PM: After review by a seismologist, the USGS has now declared the quake that struck the Bay Area at 2:57 PM PT to have a magnitude of 3.4.

5:38 PM: Way to bounce back, little earthquake! According to the folks at the USGS, this afternoon’s quake’s been upgraded to a 3.7 magnitude. It had a depth of 7.8 miles, they say.

Sure, it’s not the 3.8 they first said it was, but, still, I feel a tiny bit better about feeling jolted. Then again, it’s no 5.5, which is what Chron movie reviewer Mick LaSalle thought it was.

6:53 PM: What’s everybody else saying about today’s quake?

[Bernalwood]’s own Bronwyn Ximm reports that today’s freaky-auspicious 105th anniversary earthquake moved the ground beneath her home

An estimated 3.7 magnitude earthquake and power outage combine for weird day at SF State [Golden Gate X-Press via Storify]

Power restored after outage and quake shakes campus [Golden Gate X-Press]

QUAKE ROCKS THE CASBAH: 3.8 TEMBLOR [Pacifica Riptide]

3.7 quake shakes northern Peninsula [Chron], which says that “The earthquake type – strike-slip, meaning two plates move past each other – is ‘very characteristic’ of the San Andreas Fault that runs through the Peninsula.”

10:31 PM (Patricia Decker/Rachel Purdy, Bay City News): An earthquake with a magnitude of 3.4 and several smaller aftershocks rattled parts of the Bay Area this afternoon and evening.

Initially, the U.S. Geological Survey reported the quake had a preliminary magnitude of 3.8, which it has since revised numerous times. As of 9:50 p.m., the estimate of the strongest seismic event’s magnitude was 3.4.

The largest quake, which occurred at 2:57 p.m., was centered about two miles southwest of San Bruno and two miles southeast of Pacifica, according to the USGS.

It was followed at 3 p.m. by a second, smaller earthquake with a magnitude of 1.5. That quake was centered about two miles southwest of San Bruno and three miles southeast of Pacifica.

BART stopped its trains briefly to inspect the tracks after the first earthquake. Trains were running at normal speeds again this afternoon, but 10-minute delays reported system-wide.

Caltrain service was not affected, and operations were not altered at San Francisco International Airport.

The first quake was felt in parts of the Bay Area, including San Francisco and Oakland.
Thom Ball, library manager of the Pacifica Sharp Park Library, said he felt it. “There was a sharp jolt that was preceded by a rumbling noise. That was it,” Ball said.

“No books fell off the shelves. No lights went off. We all just felt it,” he said. Everyone seemed calm afterward, Ball said.

Michael Nee, a bartender at Behan’s Irish Pub in Burlingame, said there were only two people in the bar at the time and that the quake was over in about three seconds.
“The whole bar shook. The lights from the ceilings swayed,” Nee said.

He said there was a sound immediately before the quake. “It was like a bang, or like a crack,” Nee said.

Andrea Ormonde, who works in customer service for Bobkat Printing in San Carlos, said her coworkers noticed shaking but that she did not feel it.

“It happened just as someone was rolling by me with a cart,” she said, laughing.

“People were running out their offices. Everyone was standing in the middle of the room, looking at me, asking, ‘What was that?’ I didn’t even realize,” Ormonde said.

Several aftershocks occurred in the same area throughout the evening, including a magnitude-2.4 tremor at 4:55 p.m. and a magnitude-2.2 event at 8:35 p.m, both of which were centered two miles southeast of Pacifica.

The quakes occurred on the 105th anniversary of San Francisco’s Great Quake of 1906.

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the author

Eve Batey is the editor and publisher of the San Francisco Appeal. She used to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Deputy Managing Editor for Online, and started at the Chronicle as their blogging and interactive editor. Before that, she was a co-founding writer and the lead editor of SFist. She's been in the city since 1997, presently living in the Outer Sunset with her husband, cat, and dog. You can reach Eve at eve@sfappeal.com.

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  • Eric Black

    The epicenter for this quake is awfully close to the estimated location of the 06 quake which was 105 years ago today.

  • rwright

    I felt it in Pacifica, it was a sharp jolt, only lasted a couple of seconds, but it was definitely eerie considering it’s the anniversary of the 1906 earthquake……