Still Unknown: Exact Cause of Napa Quake

As volunteers pour in to clean up wine country

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Aug 26, 2014 1:40 AM CDT

(Newser) – People in Napa Valley, Calif., are picking up the pieces after Sunday's 6.0 earthquake wrecked scores of homes and businesses, and they're getting plenty of help from outside. Volunteers have flocked from across Northern California to assist in any way they can, reports the Los Angeles Times. The helpers include scores of Home Depot workers and an engineer from the Czech Republic who was on vacation in San Francisco when the quake struck and drove out to offer his services. "When you meet people who are helping each other, there's no difference between religions or between colors," he says. More:

  • The damage is estimated at up to $1 billion, but wineries say they will pull through and they hope tourists won't stay away, the New York Times reports. "In the end, people who are growing grapes are farmers," says an official of an organization that represents 500 local vintners. "This is a particularly strong expression of Mother Nature, but they deal with Mother Nature every day, and they are very resilient."

  • Dozens of homes have been declared uninhabitable and more than 250 people are recovering from injuries, but there have been no fatalities from the area's worst earthquake since 1989, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. The two most seriously injured victims, one of them a 13-year-old boy hurt by a falling chimney, are both expected to survive.
  • Seismologists are still working to determine the exact cause of the quake, LiveScience reports. It was initially believed to be connected to the Franklin Fault—which has been dormant for thousands of years—but researchers now believe it was the West Napa Fault, part of a wide network of faults around the San Andreas Fault, which lies 31 miles away.

A worker removes an earthquake-damaged wine barrel from a barrel storage facility in Napa, Calif.
A worker removes an earthquake-damaged wine barrel from a barrel storage facility in Napa, Calif.   (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
The earthquake-damaged historic winery building dating from 1886 at Trefethen Family Vineyards leans in Napa, California.
The earthquake-damaged historic winery building dating from 1886 at Trefethen Family Vineyards leans in Napa, California.   (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
Hundreds of damaged barrels at a Napa winery.
Hundreds of damaged barrels at a Napa winery.   (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
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