A CLUSTER of small farming towns in southern New South Wales have been hit by an unprecedented 11 earthquakes in the last seven days, the latest and strongest striking only a few hours ago.
All 11 quakes have been recorded in the hills 30km northeast of Boorowa, around 120km north of Canberra.
The first, a minor magnitude 1.6, struck shortly before 9pm last Saturday, July 8 and was followed by a much stronger magnitude 3.2 a little over two hours later.
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These two quakes were followed by a series of what were first thought to be aftershocks, but have since proven to be a series of pre-shocks leading up to an even bigger event.
A further eight tremors measuring between 1.6 and 2.0 on the Richter scale were recorded in the same area between Sunday, July 9 and Wednesday, July 12.
The latest, a ‘significant’ magnitude 3.3, struck this morning, Saturday, July 15, around 2km east of the epicenter of last Saturday’s 3.2.
GeoScience Australia says today’s quake could have been felt by people up to 31km away.
This includes residents and farmers in the small surrounding townships and villages of Boorowa, Taylors Flat, Rugby, Rye Park, Bevendale, and Narrawa.
The region is likely to be ‘alive’ with aftershocks in the coming days and weeks, with scientists unable to rule out the possibility of a larger quake yet to come.