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Update: Earthquake Shakes Central Virginia
Released: 10/21/1998

Contact Information:
U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
Office of Communication
119 National Center
Reston, VA 20192
Diane Noserale 1-click interview
Phone: 703-648-4333 | FAX: 703-648-6859

Preliminary data from the U.S. Geological Survey indicates that the magnitude 3.3 earthquake that occurred today at 1:57 am Eastern Daylight Time near Farmville in central Virginia was focused at a depth of about 5 km beneath a fault-bounded basin of Triassic age (190-225 million years) known as the Farmville basin. The Farmville basin is the largest and northernmost of five such basins, which occur along a north-northeast trending fault system that extends from Halifax County in southern Virginia to Cumberland and Buckingham Counties in central Virginia. We have not yet determined if the earthquake occurred on the main border fault of the Farmville basin or another, possibly related fault within the basin.

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