Sleepy Angelinos were awakened by a 3.6 earthquake Monday night.
The tremor struck the Westwood area around 11:20 pm, with the epicenter located just west of the Sepulveda Pass of the 405 freeway.
The U.S. Geological Survey categorized the quake as a 4 and 5 intensity, which was predominately felt near Westwood and into the San Fernando Valley, with residents also reporting shaking from Los Feliz, Silver Lake and Glendale.
Luckily, there was no damage reported. In fact, Los Angeles gets earthquakes of this size relatively frequently.
“We get these size earthquakes fairly frequently,” seismologist Zachary Reeves to the Los Angeles Times. “Any severe damage would be pretty unlikely.”
A 2.0 aftershock followed the earthquake.
Earlier this month, it was reported that seismologists are working to release earthquake forecasts for the public. Using data from smaller quakes – similar to Monday’s 3.6 shaker – to predict larger earthquakes to come.
While it was previously believed that smaller temblors relieve stress on major fault lines, seismologist now say the likelihood of a large earthquake rises if moderate seismic activity occurs near a large fault line.
“Big earthquakes can come in clusters. And one can trigger the other,” U.S. Geological Survey seismologist Ned Field, author of the new forecasting model told the Times.
“If you have more little things popping off, you have more opportunities for one of those to grow into something big,” Field added.
Fortunately, Monday’s shaker was on an east-trending fault and was “too small to assign to a mapped fault,” according to seismologists Lucy Jones.
Now, more than ever, it’s important to be proactive about earthquake preparation and safety.
Julian De La Torre is an expert in Los Angeles foundation inspection, foundation contractors and foundation repair. Julian’s company, Julian Construction, has inspected over 15,000 structures, working with engineering firms and local departments of building & safety. The company has done more foundation repair in Los Angeles than any other company in the area over the last five years.