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Thursday 18 September 2014

Three critical after huge earthquake rocks California

Published 25/08/2014 | 02:30

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A building destroyed following a reported 6.0 earthquake in Napa, California. Photo: Getty

A large earthquake has caused significant damage and left three people critically injured in California's northern Bay Area, igniting fires, sending at least 87 people to a hospital and knocking out power to tens of thousands.

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Two adults and one child have critical injuries and Queen of the Valley hospital has treated 87 people, the city of Napa in California wine country said yesterday.

Most patients have cuts, bumps, bruises, said Vanessa DeGier, spokeswoman for the hospital in Napa. She said the facility had treated a hip fracture and heart attack, but it's unclear if it was related to the 6.0-magnitude earthquake.

The quake caused six significant fires, including at a mobile home park, Napa Division Fire Chief Darren Drake said.

The earthquake struck just before 3:30am about 10km south-west of Napa, said Leslie Gordon of the US Geological Survey (USGS). It's the largest earthquake to shake the Bay Area since the 6.9-magnitude Loma Prieta quake in 1989, the USGS said. That earthquake struck the San Francisco Bay Area on October 17, 1989, during a baseball championship World Series game between the San Francisco 
Giants and the Oakland Athletics, collapsing part of the Bay Bridge roadway and killing more than 60 people, most when an Oakland freeway fell.

Three historic buildings in Napa have been damaged in the current quake, including the county courthouse. Widespread power outages were reported.

Irish Independent

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