California Earthquake Today: Bay Area Rattled Again by Minor Earthquake

An earthquake with a magnitude of 3.6 hit California's Bay Area Thursday morning. According to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the earth tremor happened at 5:36 a.m. and was centered in Berkeley.

Felt around Berkeley, Oakland, Alameda and San Francisco, the Oakland Tribune reported that Urel Gonzales, who works at Café Trieste on San Pablo Avenue in Berkeley, described Thursday's earthquake as a "big boom, a big crash."

But it was not as big as the one last Thursday," Gonzales said. Last Thursday, the Bay Area was rocked by a widely felt 4.0 earthquake and a 3.8 aftershock.

The six-mile earthquake Thursday morning was originally classified as a magnitude-3.9 but was downgraded to 3.6 by the USGS.

Keith Knudsen, deputy director at the Earthquake Science Center, told the Oakland Tribune that the number of earthquakes hitting the same area is a "little bit unusual."

Knudsen who lives in Albany said, "These are getting up there in size, so it's interesting. With an earthquake like this there is always a chance it is a foreshock to a bigger earthquake coming, but that's a low probability."

While no damages were immediately reported, the earthquakes in Sacramento have Bay Area residents wondering whether they their home or property insurance would cover potential damages from an earthquake.

Glenn Pomeroy, a chief executive officer of the California Earthquake Authority, said most people do not have earthquake coverage and that the average homeowner's policy does not cover quake damage. Pomeroy advises concerned residents to look into purchasing an earthquake-specific policy, which is available through the Sacramento-based CEA.

Established in 1996, the CEA sells earthquake insurance policies through participating insurance companies.