Huge crack in earth detected in satellite images after earthquake in California

Andrew Buncombe

The earthquake that recently shook residents of California, was powerful enough to leave a crack visible in satellite images.

As people in southern California communities such as Ridgecrest, continued to clear up from two of the biggest earthquakes in decades, scientists revealed the quake had left large cracks in some locations.

“Ridgecrest earthquake before (4th July) & after (6th July) images from Doves, clearly showing surface rupture,” tweeted Will Marshall, the CEO and founder of Planet Labs, referring to one of the company’s satellites.

The San Francisco-based company says its mission is to continuously monitor the entirety of the planet.

“With 150+ satellites in orbit, Planet is able to image anywhere on earth daily at 3 metre and 72 centimetre resolution,” says its website.

“Monitor your areas of interest, discover patterns, and deliver timely insights.”

Saturday’s quake, with a magnitude of 7.1, jolted much of California, cracked buildings, set fires, broke roads and caused several injuries while seismologists warned that large aftershocks were expected to continue, according to reports.

The epicentre was close to the city of Ridgecrest, about 140 miles north east of Los Angeles.

The quake – preceded by Thursday’s 6.4-magnitude temblor in the Mojave Desert, was the largest in southern California for at least 20 years.

It was followed by a series of large and small aftershocks, including a handful above magnitude 5.0.

On Monday, officials said it could be several more days before water service was restored to the desert town of Trona, where officials trucked in portable toilets and showers.

Ten residences in Trona were listed as uninhabitable and officials expected that number to rise as inspectors complete more surveys of the area.

California is spending more than $16m to instal thousands of quake-detecting sensors statewide that officials say will give utilities and trains precious seconds to shut down before the shaking starts.

Governor Gavin Newsom said it was time for residents to help, by mapping out emergency escape routes and preparing earthquake kits with food, water, lights and other necessities.

“It is a wake-up call for the rest of the state and other parts of the nation, frankly,” he said.

Additional reporting by Associated Press