Geology Matters No. 14
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Earthquakes shakes East Coast
Dr Brian McConnell, Bedrock Programme

Two earthquakes recently occurred just off the coast of the Llyn peninsula, North Wales. The first was at 3.16am on Wednesday 29th May, Magnitude is variably reported as between 3.8ML and 4.2ML at a depth of 8km. The second of magnitude 2.8ML took place in almost the same location at 22.28 on the 26th of June.

The earthquakes were produced by movements on the Menai Straits fault system, which runs across the Irish Sea from Anglesey to South Wexford. This fault has had a long geological history of movement and is a locus of small earthquakes to the present day.

Shaking of buildings has been reported across SE Ireland, from counties Wexford to Dublin. In Britain, the tremors were felt in many communities in North Wales and even in Douglas, Isle of Man and Southport, Lancashire.

In 1984 the Llyn Peninsula was also the site of the largest earthquake felt in Ireland in recent times, which measured 5.4ML.

 Location of recent earthquakes
Location of recent earthquakes - courtesy of BGS

Image captured by GSI
Image captured on May 29th by Seismograph based at the Geological Survey of Ireland