On Tuesday, a late-night earthquake jolted Trinidad, with shaking reported across much of the island. The University of the West Indies Seismic Research Centre recorded this quake 120 kilometres northwest of Port of Spain, Trinidad, and Tobago at 10:59 p.m.
The Centre said this quake registered as 4.7 on the Richter Scale at a depth of 68 kilometers.
The seismic event was widely reported felt across north Trinidad, where some even said they heard rumbling before the shaking began. This is normal ahead of earthquakes as the initial seismic waves may be audible.
Shaking lasted no more than a few seconds for most, with the strongest shaking across northwestern areas of Trinidad though the event was reported felt across Central Trinidad.
The earthquake struck northwest of Trinidad in an area known as north of the Paria Peninsula. This area is known to produce frequent earthquakes, and the UWI SRC noted it is the second most seismically active area in the Eastern Caribbean.
According to the Centre, approximately 65 events of magnitude 2.1 and above are located in the area annually. There have also been major and great earthquakes (above magnitude 7.0) in historic times.
In the Centre’s Island Profile on Trinidad, they note that the 1766 magnitude 7.9 event, estimated to have been located north of the Paria Peninsula, is reported to have destroyed the then Capital of San José. Another significant event, the 1888 magnitude 7.5 earthquake, caused damage from Trinidad to St. Vincent.
Since seismometers were located in the Eastern Caribbean, the largest event recorded occurred on September 20th, 1968, at a magnitude of 7.0. Significant damage was caused in Venezuela and Trinidad, where there was damage in Port of Spain.