Wine country was rocked nine years ago today by the South Napa Earthquake, which caused at least $400 million worth of damage to the county, and caused one death and more than 200 injuries.
If you lived in the Bay Area back in 2014, you may remember being woken up at 3:20 a.m. nine years ago on this day, by the 6.0-magnitude South Napa Earthquake. It was quickly followed by more than a dozen aftershocks, and then-Governor Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency as giant cracks tore apart Highway 121. (And check out the young Dan Ashley in that KGO report!)
As KRON4 explains in their nine-year anniversary writeup, “Buildings and infrastructure were heavily damaged as fires began throughout Napa County. The earthquake caused more than $400 million in damages and was the largest to hit the Bay Area since the Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989.”
Damage estimates were initially around $380 million, and economic and physical damage to the wine industry was later estimated between $80 million and $100 million, with some wineries losing large caches of library vintages, and others losing barrels of newer ones.
Despite the 208 injuries, there was only one death associated with the earthquake. 65-year-old Laurie Anne Thompson had her television fall on her head, though she did not initially seek medical care, thinking the injury wasn’t that bad. But she did go to the hospital the next day with symptoms of dizziness, and died 12 days later from an intracranial hemorrhage.
There was an uplifting story from the wreckage, though. 13-year-old Nicholas Dillon had a whole damn chimney fall on him, smashing his pelvis. He was told he wouldn’t be able to walk again for at least six months. But it only took him two-and-a-half months, and six months later he was back on his soccer team, as the Napa Valley Register dubbed him “Chimney Boy.”
Oh god. What if we all die in an earthquake and the only people left to rebuild are the ones who went to Burning Man? #terrifying— daisy barringer (@daisy) August 24, 2014
So mark the anniversary by making sure you have your earthquake kit together, as you never know the day and time that the inevitable Big One is going to hit.
Image: NAPA, CA - AUGUST 26: Workers erect a fence around the earthquake-damaged Vintner's Collective building on August 26, 2014 in Napa, California. Two days after a 6.0 earthquake rocked the Napa Valley, residents and wineries are continuing clean up operations. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)