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Magnitude 4.5 quake felt across Southern California

The temblor, centered about a mile south of San Bernardino, caused no major damage, authorities said.

January 09, 2009|David Kelly and Jia-Rui Chong

An earthquake estimated at magnitude 4.5 centered about a mile south of San Bernardino jolted Southern California on Thursday evening but caused no major damage, according to authorities.

The quake was felt just before 8 p.m. in downtown Los Angeles, parts of the High Desert, San Pedro and coastal and inland Orange County, but not as far south as San Diego.

"It was a hard jolt that lasted no more than five to eight seconds," said San Bernardino Fire Department spokesman Steve Tracy. "There were some minor cracks in the concrete, one lady's roof suffered slight damage, there was damage to some walkways but nothing major."

U.S. Geological Survey seismologist Lucy Jones said the quake appeared to strike near the northern end of the San Jacinto fault, which is considered part of the San Andreas fault system. It was initially reported as magnitude 5.0 but was soon downgraded.

The temblor was comparable to the 1988 Pasadena earthquake and about 25 times smaller than the Chino Hills quake last summer.

"It's the type of earthquake we used to have in L.A. every year in the '80s," Jones said. "After Northridge, it went quiet."

Jones said a magnitude 3.3 aftershock occurred about an hour later.

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david.kelly@latimes.com

jia-rui.chong@latimes.com

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