Magnitude 5.8 earthquake rouses slumbering Montana residents

LINCOLN, Mont. — An earthquake strong enough to rouse sleeping residents more than 30 miles (48 kilometres) from its epicenter struck western Montana early Thursday.

Residents in Lethbridge felt “heavy shaking.”

A magnitude 5.8 earthquake hit just after midnight about 6 miles (9.7 kilometres) southeast of Lincoln, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. There were no immediate reports of injuries.

Residents in Lincoln briefly lost power and there was a gas leak in Helena, the National Weather Service in Great Falls said on Twitter.

The Independent Record reports that people felt the quake as far away as Bozeman, Idaho, and Great Falls.

Ray Anderson, 76, tells The Associated Press that it was the strongest seismic activity he had ever felt while living in Helena, which is about 34 miles away from the quake’s epicenter.

He said his wife told him the temblor woke up the dogs.

Musician John Mayer, a part-time Bozeman resident, took to Twitter to marvel at the event.

“Wow,” he wrote on Twitter. “Earthquake in Montana.”

There have been more than 70 quakes measuring larger than 4.5 in Montana and parts of Wyoming and Idaho since 1925, according to the USGS. The largest quake in state history was magnitude 7.2 in 1959 near west Yellowstone.


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