How common are earthquakes in East Tenn.?

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - A lot of folks in the Blount and Knox County areas say they felt the 2.7 earthquake late Monday. Many of you had questions about this earthquake activity in our area, and Sarah wanted to know more about the local seismic zone.

Most folks have heard of the New Madrid fault line that runs along West Tennessee, the East Tennessee Seismic Zone is a very active one. This area may have a lot of activity, but it’s predominately weak earthquakes. Quakes with a magnitude of 2 and smaller are the most common. This zone impacts more of East Tennessee and reaches into North Georgia.

There were no reports of damage or injuries with this 2.7 but it caught many off guard. Reports of folks feeling it stretches into far West Knox County, in the Farragut area.

Something important to keep in mind is that the magnitude scale for earthquakes is that each step up on the scale is exponential. So a 3.0 is 31-times stronger than a 2.0.