A magnitude 5.8 earthquake hit a mountainous area of western Montana overnight Thursday, producing minor damage near the epicenter. The quake, reportedly the strongest to hit the state in 12 years, was felt as far away as eastern Washington, southern Canada and Idaho.
Some minor damage, mainly objects falling from shelves and dishes rattled or broken, was also reported in Missoula, Montana, about 65 miles west of the epicenter.
Meteorologists at the National Weather Service office in Missoula felt the quake, saying the “First wave sounded like wind gusts. Then we were rolling like waves.”
The quake was felt up to 500 miles away in Seattle and Vancouver, British Columbia, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. Light shaking was also felt in Spokane, Washington, Calgary, Alberta, Boise, Idaho and Billings, Montana.
Nine aftershocks followed over the next hour, including a magnitude 4.9 temblor just five minutes after the initial quake.
According to KPAX TV, this was the strongest earthquake in Montana in 12 years, since a magnitude 5.6 temblor struck near the southwest Montana city of Dillon on July 26, 2005.
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