wsls logo

Minor earthquake confirmed near Montgomery, Roanoke County line

USGS confirmed it was a 2.6M quake

A rude awakening for some this morning after a 2.6 magnitude earthquake along the Roanoke-Montgomery County line.
A rude awakening for some this morning after a 2.6 magnitude earthquake along the Roanoke-Montgomery County line.

SALEM, Va. – The United States Geological Survey confirms that a 2.6M earthquake hit four kilometers north of Lafayette in southwest Virginia Monday morning around 9:37 a.m.

People in parts of Salem reported the ground shaking between 9:30 and 9:40 Monday morning.

The National Earthquake Information Center called 10 News to confirm the quake despite initial reports that it may have been a mining blast.

It was detected on the Virginia Tech seismic network, with another report sent to us via Twitter.

Jeremy Howard was working from home in Salem and said his morning was interrupted by the shaking.

“A little after 9:30 in the morning, there was a really loud bang and my head shot up and my dog’s head shot up,” Howard said. “We thought something may have hit the house. We walked outside and saw other neighbors looking around and we all understood that we felt a very short earthquake.”

Earthquakes in the 2.5 to 5.4 magnitude range on the Richter Scale are typically felt, but don’t record much damage.

Doug Griggs in Salem emailed 10 News and mentioned some small cracks in his driveway and a depression on his street that may have been caused by the earthquake.

For perspective, the earthquake in Sparta, North Carolina last year came in at 5.1 magnitude.


About the Authors:

Meteorologist Chris Michaels is an American Meteorological Society (AMS) Certified Broadcaster, forecasting weather conditions in southwest Virginia on WSLS 10 News from 5 a.m. to 7 a.m. weekdays on Virginia Today.

Justin McKee presents the weather forecast on 10 News Saturday and Sunday mornings from 6 to 8 a.m. He also fills in for other meteorologists during the week.