The two small earthquakes that shook rural Hancock County overnight aren't the first to occur in Georgia.
More than three dozen earthquakes of magnitude 2.5 or greater have occurred in Georgia since 1974, according to an Atlanta Journal-Constitution analysis of data from the U.S. Geological Survey.
The AJC mapped Georgia's earthquakes and found some interesting facts:
- We found 40 earthquakes with center points inside Georgia's boundaries, even though the descriptions in the federal data say "Alabama" for a few in the far northwestern part of the state.
- The two in Hancock County were the first two so far in Georgia this year.
- Not surprisingly, the data shows Georgia doesn't have that many quakes. It had one quake of 2.5 or greater last year, one in 2015, one in 2014 and four in 2013.
- The counties with the most quakes since 1974 were Walker and Whitfield in northwest Georgia, with six each, followed by Lincoln and Hancock, with five each.
- The map suggests they rarely happen just anywhere -- they're largely grouped around the "Fall Line" and in northwest Georgia, though there are a few outliers.
- The highest magnitude earthquake in Georgia since 1974 was in Lincoln County in 1974, registering 4.3 on the scale. There was also a 4.2 quake in Whitfield County in 1984. Georgia hasn't broken 4.0 since then and hasn't broken 3.0 since 2009.
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