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THOUSANDS FEEL THE EARTH MOVE; Quake's 5.30am wake-up alarm.

THE most powerful earth tremor in Britain for a decade shook Coventry and Warwickshire awake this morning.

Thousands of people were alarmed by the 5.30am quake, which was strong enough to vibrate walls and rattle crockery.

The deep rumble was recorded at 4.2 on the Richter scale Richter scale (rĭk`tər), measure of the magnitude of seismic waves from an earthquake, devised in 1935 by the American seismologist Charles F. Richter (1900–1985). . But no damage was reported and no-one was hurt.

The epicentre epicentre

Point on the surface of the Earth that is directly above the source (or focus) of an earthquake. There the effects of the earthquake usually are most severe. See also seismology.
 was at Budbrooke, near Warwick, although households up to 30 miles away were shaken.

Seismologists say the tremor was caused by a minor geological fault underneath Warwickshire.

Garage owner Leo Leo, in astronomy
Leo [Lat.,=the lion], northern constellation lying S of Ursa Major and on the ecliptic (apparent path of the sun through the heavens) between Cancer and Virgo; it is one of the constellations of the zodiac.
 McDermott, of Mantilla Drive, Styvechale, Coventry, said: "I was frightened and so was my wife but I knew immediately it was an earthquake.

"My sister lives in San Francisco San Francisco (săn frănsĭs`kō), city (1990 pop. 723,959), coextensive with San Francisco co., W Calif., on the tip of a peninsula between the Pacific Ocean and San Francisco Bay, which are connected by the strait known as the Golden  and I have slept through quakes there. It felt like someone had crashed into the back of our house."

Many families thought their homes were being broken into. A police spokesman in Coventry said: "We had a number of calls from people who thought intruders were on their premises. An earthquake is the last thing you expect."

Lisa Adam, aged 15, of Chesford Crescent, Alderman's Green, bolted awake at 5.30am.

She said: "The whole house was shaking and I really panicked. I ran into my parents, but they told me I was dreaming."

Alan Eaton, a builder, of Darnford Close, Walsgrave, said: "I heard a huge bang and thought it was a car outside, but then I realised it was something like an earthquake because my radiator wouldn't stop rattling."

In south Warwickshire Insp Colin Reynolds Colin Reynolds (3 October 1968) is a Welsh footballer, currently playing for Caersws F.C. in the Welsh Premier League.

Reynolds holds the record for the highest number of appearances in the league (468 as at 13 April 2007) and became the first player ever to notch up 400
 said: "We had about 50 phone calls following the tremor.

"We have checked the motorways and bridges in the area, but no damage is reported."

Seismologist seis·mol·o·gy  
The geophysical science of earthquakes and the mechanical properties of the earth.

 Glenn Ford Gwyllyn Samuel Newton "Glenn" Ford (May 1, 1916 – August 30, 2006) was an acclaimed Canadian-born actor from Hollywood's Golden Era with a career that spanned seven decades. Ford is best known for playing either cowboys or ordinary men in unusual circumstances.  of the British Geological Survey The British Geological Survey (BGS) is a partly publicly-funded body which aims to advance geoscientific knowledge of the United Kingdom landmass and its continental shelf by means of systematic surveying, monitoring and research.  in Edinburgh said: "People would have felt windows rattling profusely pro·fuse  
1. Plentiful; copious.

2. Giving or given freely and abundantly; extravagant: were profuse in their compliments.
 for about five seconds.

"It was felt as far away as Gloucester, Birmingham and Rugby and was enough to set ornaments shaking but not to do serious damage - it was 100,000 times smaller than the Turkish quake last year."

It was Britain's strongest tremor since 1990, when Bishop's Castle, Shropshire, was hit.

Christine Graham, manager of the Highway Girl boutique in Riley Square, Bell Green, said shoppers had been buzzing with news of the tremor.

"People from the Bell Green and Aldermans Green areas were woken by the earthquake. They have said pictures were rattling and beds shaking from the force of it."

Security firm managing director Tony Walsh Tony Walsh was an Irish soccer player during the 1950s and 1960s in the League of Ireland.

Walsh was a forward who spent 1 season (1959/60) at Bohemians where he made 8 appearances, scoring just once.
, aged 51, of Glasshouse Lane, Kenilworth, said: "I heard an explosion and jumped out of bed because I thought somebody was breaking into the house.

"The house was physically shaking. I've never known anything like it before."

We've felt it all before ...

PREVIOUS earthquakes in the Coventry and Warwickshire area:

May 1994: Welford-on-Avon, near Stratford, was the epicentre of an earthquake measuring 3.1 on the Richter scale. The effects were felt in Stratford and as far away as Worcester.

April 1990: An earthquake measuring 3.0 on the Richter scale was felt in a large part of central and southern England including Coventry, London, Brighton, Liverpool, Leeds and Manchester.

July 1984: An earthquake measuring 5.0 on the Richter scale toppled a chimney in Radford, Coventry and was also felt in Warwickshire, Wales Wales, Welsh Cymru, western peninsula and political division (principality) of Great Britain (1991 pop. 2,798,200), 8,016 sq mi (20,761 sq km), west of England; politically united with England since 1536. The capital is Cardiff. , Cheshire, Lancashire, Staffordshire, Cumbria and the Isle of Man Noun 1. Isle of Man - one of the British Isles in the Irish Sea

British Isles - Great Britain and Ireland and adjacent islands in the north Atlantic

November 1975: An earth tremor shook Ash Green, on the outskirts of Coventry, and a small area nearby.

11 quakes in 30 days

In the past 30 days there have been 11 earthquakes in Britain but most of them were so low on the Richter scale they were barely noticeable.

Britain is criss-crossed with small fault lines where earthquakes take place.

According to available records 11 people have died in British earthquakes, the first in 1580 and the last in 1940. Most of them died from being hit by falling masonry, falling out of windows or falling downstairs.

The largest quake recorded in Britain was at Dogger Bank in the North Sea off the east coast. It took place in the early hours of the morning on June 7, 1931 and measured 6.1 on the Richter scale.

The biggest earthquakes ever measured were in Chile in 1960 and Alaska in 1964, both registering 8.5 on the Richter scale.

The world's hottest spot for earthquakes is on the edge of the Pacific Ocean in an area running from South American, along the west coast of the USA, through Alaska, Japan, China, the Philippines, Indonesia to Australia.
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Author:Diver, Krysia; Wilson, Lucy
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Sep 23, 2000
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