Canada Big bang, possibly an ice quake, shakes Alberta Beach during the night

12:55  03 january  2018
12:55  03 january  2018 Source:   Edmonton Journal

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Some residents of Alberta Beach awoke earlier this week to a very loud bang , and in the morning they reported cracks in homes and the ground.

ALBERTA BEACH , Alta. — Some residents of a village west of Edmonton awoke earlier this week to a very loud bang , and in the morning they reported cracks in homes and the ground. Alberta Beach mayor Jim Benedict says people thought something had hit their houses — or that something had

010318-527890380: Seismograph<br />© Petrovich9 Seismograph

Alberta Beach — Some residents of a village west of Edmonton awoke earlier this week to a very loud bang, and in the morning they reported cracks in homes and the ground.

Alberta Beach Mayor Jim Benedict says people thought something had hit their houses — or that something had fallen on their houses — early Tuesday morning.

Alberta Energy Regulator spokesman Jordan Fitzgerald said staff at the regulator’s Alberta Geological Survey confirm there were two seismic events of approximately 2.0 magnitude late Monday night.

Staff can’t confirm their exact location due to the low magnitude and the sparsity of nearby seismic stations, but Fitzgerald said initial information shows they were consistent with reports of an earthquake near Alberta Beach.

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Some residents of Alberta Beach awoke earlier this week to a very loud bang , and in the morning they reported cracks in homes and the ground.

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Staff believe there may have been a natural earthquake or an “ice quake,” which Fitzgerald said occurs when cold winter temperatures cause groundwater to freeze quickly, causing the ground to suddenly crack.

The water table in the area is high and it’s possible it froze and “popped,” Benedict said.

“I slept through it. I had people phoning me saying they’d heard it at 1:30 and they thought there was an explosion somewhere,” Benedict said.

The reports of possible damage were at homes close to the shore of Lac Ste. Anne, he said.

On Tuesday, he noticed the ice on the lake had heaved and open water appeared. He said popping noises were coming from the lake all day.

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