Capetonians are still in shock after Tuesday morning’s tremors vibrated across various suburbs in the Cape Metropole. At 12.27am, some Capetonians woke up to hear their windows rattling, with many speculating the vibrations were indeed earth tremors. The US Geological Survey confirmed that a 3.5 magnitude tremor was felt across Cape Town and originated in Saldanha Bay. The earthquake was recorded about 41 kilometres off the sea south-east of Saldanha, at a depth of 5 kilometres. This is the second time the seismic activity has been felt since a 6.2-magnitude earthquake was detected roughly 1600km offshore in Cape Town in September, which was followed by a 2.5 and 2.9-magnitude tremors felt in some suburbs.
Speaking to VOC, geologist Gideon Groenewald said the latest tremor sits close to the fracture of the earthquake experienced in September. He said Tuesday morning’s tremor may be an aftershock.
“In the Tulbagh earthquake of 1969, there were aftershocks up to one year later. 3.5 magnitude is not that great, but once it gets to 5’s and 6’s on the Richter scale, it will be serious,” he explained.
“There’s a definite move in the plates surrounding South Africa, so we might see a few more earthquakes.”
Groenwald said there’s no tsunami warning yet.
“People must be careful of rogue waves. It could be small waves that come in with high energy. So for the next day, be careful on the beaches.”
The Western Cape Local Government Ministry said there have been no reports of damage to infrastructure or casualties. Ministry spokesperson James Brent Styan says there is no cause for panic. He has reassured that the situation is closely monitored and there’s no imminent threat to public safety.
Meanwhile, many Capetonians had similar experiences of the tremors.