Minor earthquake recorded in Dorchester County

      Google map from USGS

      DORCHESTER, S.C. (WCIV) -- A small earthquake was recorded by The U.S. Geological Survey in the early hours of Tuesday morning.The magnitude 1.4 quake hit just after 4 a.m. off Ashley River Road. The epicenter was just to the west of the Kings Grant Golf Club on Dorchester Road, south of the Old Fort Dorchester State Park and was 7.6 miles underground.

      For those who like to map these events, the coordinates are 32.9318N, 80.1658W.

      College of Charleston Associated Professor of Geology Dr. Erin Beutel stresses that the number of quakes experienced in the area vary year by year and that there is no reason to think the small rumbles are leading up to a larger event.

      "Earthquakes of this magnitude are so small that they are very unlikely to be felt by people and never cause damage," Dr. Beutel said Tuesday. "Small earthquakes occur on a regular basis on active faults, (those that are still moving and can produce large earthquakes), and are one way that scientists know which faults might produce a large earthquake in the future.{} The location of this earthquake in Summerville is consistent with it being part of the fault grouping that caused the magnitude 7.0 earthquake in 1886."