Most of you probably slept right through it (the quake), Yes – we usually do.
That’s right, we usually do, or other wise not notice because we’re driving or otherwise in motion. Yeah, I’m talking about last night’s earthquake.
I’m usually one of those who ‘miss’ it but last night was the exception. I experienced a 10 second pulse of shaking that left no doubt as to what it was.
Some people heard a bang and some experienced just shaking. If you or your property is on rocky ground or bedrock you’d have heard the bang more. If your house sits on clay you’d have been shaken longer and heard less noise. Those on higher floors do sometimes feel more motion, depending on the type of structure.
As a Montreal home and property inspector I have to tell you that whether or not you noticed it, your house surely did. You may have some wall or basement cracks appear, existing cracks open and close, or there may be no noticeable effects at all.
I often get asked if basement cracks are structural and what the cause might be. Same thing for wall cracks in 1950s built homes.
Last night we experienced a rare occurrence (thankfully) that does cause this type of cracking.
If you have a crack in concrete or masonry that has opened more than a pencil thickness, or has one side moved (in-out, up-down) compared to the other side then you should have it evaluated by a professional like me.
1950s built homes with plaster-gypsum lath walls are rigid and inflexible. They crack easily. Hairline cracking is common.
But if your walls are joint taped gyproc (i.e. drywall) and you have a new crack after last nights quake then that is more significant because this system already allows some movement.
Call or email me if you have any doubt or concerns.
Robert Butler 514 914 1249, firstname.lastname@example.org
N.B. The quake occurred in the fault line (system) that is responsible for the straight north south axis of the Richelieu River. Most major rivers have such fault lines associated with them.
Original blog post on ActiveRain: Link to Blog Post