facebook pixel

Sorry, your browser is not compatible with this website.

This website uses technology supported by Internet Explorer 9.0 or higher, Chrome, Safari, and Safari mobile. Open with the latest versions of our supported browsers below.

What browser do I have?

We Provide Earthquake Insurance for Californians

California Earthquakes & Faults by County

Do you live near a major fault?

Nearly everyone in California lives within 30 miles of an active fault that could cause a damaging earthquake.
In fact, some 2,000 known faults criss-cross California, and scientists continue to discover new ones.

Earthquakes happen all the time

Since the magnitude 6.7 earthquake in Northridge in 1994, according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), California has experienced 1,172 earthquakes with a magnitude 4.0 or greater -- including the most recent magnitude 6.0 South Napa quake.

  • Some of the world’s most devastating earthquakes have occurred on previously unknown faults, such as the Northridge quake.
  • As the magnitude 6.9 Loma Prieta earthquake of 1989 proved, sometimes the most extensive earthquake damage can occur many miles from the fault and epicenter. The USGS reports that the most severe property damage occurred in Oakland and San Francisco, more than 60 miles from the epicenter in the Santa Cruz Mountains.

Staying Safe Where the Earth Shakes will help you understand your earthquake risk where you live, and learn how to prepare to survive and recover from the next earthquake.

What are the earthquake risks where you live?

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

North Coast

Del Norte, Humboldt, Lake, Mendocino

Our Northern California counties are full of natural beauty, along the coast and within the forests.

But like all of California, this area is earthquake country.

  • The Cascadia Subduction Zone stretches underneath the Humboldt-Del Norte county region, starting north of Cape Mendocino.
  • In April 2008, a UCERF study concluded that there is a 10 percent probability of a magnitude 8 or 9 earthquake along this zone in the next 30 years.
  • Very large earthquakes occurring close to the coast could affect us.
  • There is also a risk of tsunamis in this region. 

Life After a Big Quake

Damaging earthquakes will disrupt services like electricity, water and sewer, and may limit access in and out of the region.

  • Fire and police departments will be dealing with the most serious situations and may be unable to respond quickly to issues in your community.
  • Government assistance may not be available or may not be enough to replace your damaged belongings or repair your home.
  • Taking steps now will give you confidence that you and your family are prepared to stay safe where the earth shakes.

Shasta Cascade

 

Butte, Glenn, Lassen, Modoc, Plumas, Shasta, Sierra, Siskiyou, Tehama, Trinity

The Trinity Mountains, Modoc Plateau, Shasta and Lassen peaks were created by geologic forces which are still shaping the landscape. In addition to our volcanoes, we also live in earthquake country!

Our region lives within 20 miles of an active fault.

  • The Modoc Plateau has both active volcanoes and faults.
  • Much of the north-eastern part of the state is actively stretching apart, creating numerous faults, all capable of producing earthquakes.
  • Very large earthquakes that occur closer to the coast could also affect us.
  • Even moderate shaking can trigger landslides that can quickly block roads and highways.

Life After a Big Quake

Damaging earthquakes will disrupt services like electricity, water and sewer, and may limit access in and out of the region.

  • Fire and police departments will be dealing with the most serious situations and may be unable to respond quickly to issues in your community.
  • Government assistance may not be available or may not be enough to replace your damaged belongings or repair your home.
  • Taking steps now will give you confidence that you and your family are prepared to stay safe where the earth shakes.

Bay Area

Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, Sonoma

The greater San Francisco Bay Area has a high likelihood of future damaging earthquakes. 

Most of us in the Bay Area live less than 10 miles from a major fault.

  • The San Andreas fault runs along the Sonoma Coast through the Santa Cruz Mountains, and the Hayward fault covers the hills on the east side of the San Francisco Bay. Both can cause damaging earthquakes.
  • Numerous other faults are capable of producing damaging earthquakes similar in magnitude to the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake.
  • Soils in lowland areas away from major faults may also be unable to support buildings during earthquakes. Landslides are likely on hillsides.
  • Coastal areas are also at risk of tsunamis, generated from earthquakes on local faults or across the Pacific.

Life After a Big Quake

Damaging earthquakes will disrupt services like electricity, water and sewer. Access to our region may be limited.

  • Fire and police departments will be dealing with the most serious situations and may be unable to respond quickly to issues in your community.
  • Government assistance may not be available or may not be enough to replace your damaged belongings or repair your home.
  • Taking steps so that you and your family are prepared to stay safe.

Delta Sierra

Alpine, Amador, Calaveras, Colusa, El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tuolumne, Yolo, Yuba

The Delta region and the Sierra Nevada are known for natural scenery and historic landmarks, yet we also face earthquakes.

The mountains and the valley have been shaped by repeated earthquakes on faults in the region.

  • Moderate magnitude earthquakes have occurred in the high Sierra, the foothills and in the Central Valley.
  • These occurred on active faults found in wide zones along the crest of the Sierra Nevada, through Lake Tahoe, along the foothills, and in the western Sacramento Valley.
  • Large quakes from distant faults such as those in the Bay Area or east of the Sierra Nevada can also cause significant damage to homes, businesses, and communities, especially in areas where water levels are high in soft soils that can settle unevenly during shaking.

Life After a Big Quake

Damaging earthquakes will disrupt services like electricity, water and sewer, and may limit access in and out of the region.

  • Fire and police departments will be dealing with the most serious situations and may be unable to respond quickly to issues in your community.
  • Government assistance may not be available or may not be enough to replace your damaged belongings or repair your home.
  • Taking steps now will give you confidence that you and your family are prepared to stay safe where the earth shakes.

Central Coast

Monterey, San Benito, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz

This region has a long history of damaging earthquakes. Like most of California, this is earthquake country! 

Most of us in the Central Coast live less than 15 miles from a fault that can have a damaging earthquake.

  • The most frequent large earthquakes that will affect the region will occur along the San Andreas fault.
  • The San Gregorio fault follows the coast, usually just offshore.
  • Numerous other faults are capable of having moderate magnitude (but still damaging) earthquakes similar to the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake.
  • Coastal areas are also at risk of tsunamis, generated from either earthquakes on local faults or across the Pacific.

Life After a Big Quake

Damaging earthquakes will disrupt services like electricity, water and sewer, and may limit access in and out of the region.

  • Fire and police departments will be dealing with the most serious situations and may be unable to respond quickly to issues in your community.
  • Government assistance may not be available or may not be enough to replace your damaged belongings or repair your home.
  • Taking steps now will give you confidence that you and your family are prepared to stay safe where the earth shakes.

Central Valley South

Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Merced, Tulare

Like all of California, the Central Valley is earthquake country. Shaking can begin suddenly but have lasting impacts. 

The Central Valley is ringed by faults.

  • The San Andreas fault, California’s largest, is to the west, the Garlock fault to the south, and the faults of the Sierra Nevada to the east.
  • The San Andreas fault will create the biggest earthquakes – as big as magnitude 8 – that will disrupt the whole region.
  • A smaller earthquake near you can be more damaging to your house than a magnitude 8 farther away.

Life After a Big Quake

Damaging earthquakes will disrupt services like electricity, water and sewer, and may limit access in and out of the region.

  • Fire and police departments will be dealing with the most serious situations and may be unable to respond quickly to issues in your community.
  • Government assistance may not be available or may not be enough to replace your damaged belongings or repair your home.
  • Taking steps now will give you confidence that you and your family are prepared to stay safe where the earth shakes.

Inyo/Mono

Inyo, Mono

This region has been fashioned by tremendous geologic forces, from the incredible steep slope of Mt. Whitney to the vast Owens Valley in Inyo County.

Like all of California, this is earthquake country. 

  • All residents of Inyo and Mono counties live less than 15 miles from a fault that can cause a damaging earthquake.
  • Active faults at the base of the range and within the basins to the east have caused damaging earthquakes in the past, such as the 1872 Owens Valley earthquake.

Life After a Big Quake

Damaging earthquakes will disrupt services like electricity, water and sewer, and may limit access in and out of the region.

  • Fire and police departments will be dealing with the most serious situations and may be unable to respond quickly to issues in your community.
  • Government assistance may not be available or may not be enough to replace your damaged belongings or repair your home.
  • Taking steps now will give you confidence that you and your family are prepared to stay safe where the earth shakes.

Southern California Coast

Los Angeles, Ventura, Orange

Southern Californians know this is earthquake country, but many of us have not recently experienced a damaging earthquake. 

Many of the mountains, and some of the valleys, in Southern California were formed by the San Andreas fault.

  • The San Andreas is the longest fault in California, slicing through Los Angeles County along the north side of the San Gabriel Mountains.
  • It can cause the most powerful earthquakes our area can experience – as big as magnitude 8.
  • There are over a hundred smaller active faults in the region that can cause damaging earthquakes like the 1994 Northridge earthquake.
  • Coastal areas are also at risk of tsunamis, generated from earthquakes either on local faults or across the Pacific.

Life After a Big Quake

Damaging earthquakes will disrupt services like electricity, water and sewer, and may limit access in and out of the region.

  • Fire and police departments will be dealing with the most serious situations and may be unable to respond quickly to issues in your community.
  • Government assistance may not be available or may not be enough to replace your damaged belongings or repair your home.
  • Taking steps now will give you confidence that you and your family are prepared to stay safe where the earth shakes.

Inland Southern California

Imperial, Riverside, San Bernardino

Inland Southern California has scenic mountains, valleys, and deserts. Tremendous geologic forces created this spectacular landscape and continue today, reminding us often that we live in earthquake country!

Most of us in Inland Southern California live less than 10 miles from a fault that can have a damaging earthquake.

  • A large part of our population lives along the most potentially damaging fault of all - the infamous San Andreas.
  • The San Andreas fault slices through our region and can cause a devastating earthquake.
  • Many other faults, such as the San Jacinto fault, create smaller, yet more frequent earthquakes.

Life After a Big Quake

Damaging earthquakes will disrupt services like electricity, water and sewer, and may limit access in and out of the region.

  • Fire and police departments will be dealing with the most serious situations and may be unable to respond quickly to issues in your community.
  • Government assistance may not be available or may not be enough to replace your damaged belongings or repair your home.
  • Taking steps now will give you confidence that you and your family are prepared to stay safe where the earth shakes.

San Diego

Earthquakes in San Diego County

Like all of California, San Diego is earthquake country. 

Most of us in San Diego County live less than 15 miles from a fault that can have a damaging earthquake.

  • The Rose Canyon fault is along the coast and beneath downtown San Diego.
  • The Elsinore and San Jacinto faults cut through East County.
  • Large earthquakes on faults outside of the county can also shake us (like on Easter Sunday in 2010).
  • Coastal areas are also at risk of tsunamis, generated from either earthquakes on local faults or across the Pacific. 

Life After a Big Quake

Damaging earthquakes will disrupt services like electricity, water and sewer, and may limit access in and out of the region.

  • Fire and police departments will be dealing with the most serious situations and may be unable to respond quickly to issues in your community.
  • Government assistance may not be available or may not be enough to replace your damaged belongings or repair your home.
  • Taking steps now will give you confidence that you and your family are prepared to stay safe where the earth shakes.