Thursday 29 September 2022

Was it a 5.4 or 5.8? Earthquake Shakes Costa Rica Friday Night

The various monitoring agencies could not agree on the magnitude or epicenter of the quake that jolted Costa Rica's southern zone Friday night

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29 September 2022 - At The Banks - BCCR

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A more than 5 magnitude earthquake shook Costa Rica Friday, at 8:40 pm, in Buenos Aires of Puntarenas, in the southern zone, near the Panama border, and the shock wave was felt even in San José.

The country’s two centers for earthquakes and volcanic activity could not agree on the exact magnitude or the location of the epicenter.

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The Red Sismológica Nacional (RSN) – National Seismological Network, of the University of Costa Rica (UCR), placed it at 5.4 degrees after reviewing the data sent by the seismographs, while the Observatorio Vulcanológico y Sismológico de Costa Rica (Ovsicori) – Volcanological and Seismological Observatory of Costa Rica (Ovsicori), of the National University, reported a magnitude of 5.8.

The epicenter was at a depth of 12.2 km, according to Ovsicori, and 39 km, according to the RSN.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGC), pegged the quake at a 5.2. In Panama, experts at the Geosciences Institute of the University of Panama reported that a magnitude of 4.2 degrees.

What is clear is that the movement originated on land and not offshore as it usually happens in the southern part of the country.

The Ovsicori reported that it was 1.3 km southeast of Finca Santa Cruz de Buenos Aires de Puntarenas, while the RSN located it 13 km east of Boruca, Buenos Aires, the USGS 23 km ESE of Buenos Aires.

In San Jose, reports ranged from lightly felt to strong jolts in some areas. At the Q offices in Santa Ana, it was pretty strong.

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The UCR Seismic Engineering Laboratory indicated that, based on the calculated depth and location of the epicenter, the probable origin of the earthquake could be associated with the subduction process of the Cocos plate under the Caribbean plate.

The CNE said that supermarkets of Buenos Aires de Puntarenas reported falling objects from the shelves. Photo:  CNE

The Comisión Nacional de Emergencias (CNE) informed that there was no infrastructure damage or injuries, “Only objects falling in supermarkets and debris falling in route 2, tin the area of Curré towards Palmar”.

The Cruz Roja (Red Cross) confirmed they had no reports that needed their attention.

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