Did your house rattle around 8 Sunday morning?
A 5.1 magnitude earthquake struck the region along the Virginia-North Carolina border about 8:07 a.m., according to the U.S. Geological Survey’s website.
The epicenter was about 2.5 miles southeast of Sparta, North Carolina. It was the largest earthquake to hit the state since 1916, when a magnitude 5.5 quake occurred near Skyland, the National Weather Service said.
Sparta is about 80 miles from Kingsport.
The website indicates that aftershocks are likely
Be ready for more earthquakes
More earthquakes than usual (called aftershocks) will continue to occur near the mainshock.
When there are more earthquakes, the chance of a large earthquake is greater which means that the chance of damage is greater.
The USGS advises everyone to be aware of the possibility of aftershocks, especially when in or around vulnerable structures such as unreinforced masonry buildings.
This earthquake could be part of a sequence. An earthquake sequence may have larger and potentially damaging earthquakes in the future, so remember to: Drop, Cover, and Hold on.
What we think will happen next
According to our forecast, over the next week there is a 4% chance of one or more aftershocks that are larger than magnitude 5.1. It is likely that there will be smaller earthquakes over the next week, with 0 to 60 magnitude 3 or higher aftershocks. Magnitude 3 and above are large enough to be felt near the epicenter. The number of aftershocks will drop off over time, but a large aftershock can increase the numbers again temporarily.