An earthquake has occurred under the North Sea, off the coast of north east England. The epicentre of the tremor, which measured 3.9 on the Richter Scale, happened about 100 miles out to sea and at a depth of 18 kilometres.

Earthquakes in this part of the world are quite rare, but this quake – which struck yesterday at 6.52 pm – was the third in a recent series of British earthquakes. A tremor, measuring 0.9 on the Richter Scale, happened on Monday in Kirkbride, Cumbria. Another, 0.8 magnitude, quake occurred in Worcestershire on Sunday.

Yesterday’s North Sea tremor does not seem to have caused any injuries and no property damage has been reported so far. The quake was detected by the British Geological Survey (BGS), at a monitoring station at Glasidale near Whitby. 

Earthquake Strikes off North East Coast
The quake happened under the North Sea

A spokesperson for the BGS said that the cause of the tremor still hasn’t been determined.

The British Geological Service has more than 100 monitoring stations around the country. The service says that around 100 earthquakes occur in the UK each year, of which only 20% are actually felt.

While Britain is not usually affected by serious earthquakes, the BGS still says that “the risk from these earthquakes is not insignificant and must be considered when engineering for sensitive installations.”

The biggest ever earthquake to strike Britain occurred at Dogger Bank, in the North Sea, in 1931. With a magnitude of 6.1, it was felt in Britain, Ireland, Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium and parts of France, Germany and Norway.

Damage was reported in 71 different places in the UK and the top of a church spire in Filey was rotated. Chimneys and plaster were affected on the north east coast and the roof of a factory in Surrey collapsed. 

11 people are known to have died as a result of earthquakes in the UK.

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