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Folkestone shaken by another earthquake

The British Geographical Survey graph showing when the quake struck
The British Geographical Survey graph showing when the quake struck
Patricia Whelan, landlady of the Black Bull pub
Patricia Whelan, landlady of the Black Bull pub

Folkestone suffered an earthquake yesterday, although it was smaller than the tremor that hit the town two years ago.

Buildings in and around the town shook at 2.35pm - and the British Geological Survey confirmed there had been an earthquake measuring 2.8 on the Richter Scale.

Both the survey and Folkestone fire station received calls from alarmed members of the public moments after the shake - which lasted several seconds.

Julian Bukits, an assistant seismologist at the British Geological Survey in Edinburgh, said: “The earthquake happened very close to Folkestone. However, it was not nearly as big as the one in 2007 which measured 4.3 and there should not have been any damage to buildings.

“We have earthquakes all the time in the UK - nearly 200 a year, so people do not need to be alarmed. On February 23 there was an earthquake near Folkestone, in the Channel, measuring 1.6. On February 28 there was one close to Jersey 2.3.”

Susan Sargeant, another seismologist at the British Geological Survey, said: “We have seismic recording equipment at Elham and we can confirm there was an event very nearby. At the moment we are analysing the data and the reports we are receiving.”

During the last earthquake, the Black Bull pub in Folkestone was used as a base by both locals whose homes had been damaged and the media.

Patricia Whelan who runs pub in Black Bull Road, Folkestone, with her husband Brendan, said: "Luckily, this earthquake doesn't seem as bad as the last one. I haven't heard any reports of any damage to property."

David Pearce, 38, who works for Smiths Medical in Military Road, Hythe, said he and his colleagues at first thought it was big lorry rumbling outside.

He said: “Everyone then just looked at each othe and said 'Did you feel that?’”

The research and development manager said that lots of people’s family and friends were phoning in from Folkestone and West Hythe asking if they

had felt it.

He said: “I have never felt and earthquake before. It was very scary.”

The latest quake was felt in Hythe and Dover.

Folkestone suffered a major earthquake on Saturday, April 28 2007.

Firefighters at Folkestone were not called to any incident after this earthquake. Last time they were inundated with calls for help as buildings crumpled and people were trapped.

Anyone with quake related concerns can ring Shepway District Council on 01303 853538.

If you felt the earthquake the British Geological Survey would like to hear from you.

Visit its website at www.earthquakes.bgs.ak.uk to give your report.

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