A series of earthquakes has been detected in the Caribbean in the last 12 hours, with the latest one recorded at magnitude 5.1 on Saturday morning.
The epicenter of the magnitude 5.1 earthquake was located at 288km North-Northeast of Basseterre, Saint Kitts and Nevis, according to the UWI Seismic Research Centre.
The earthquake was also felt in nearby cities of Antigua and Barbuda, and Guadeloupe.
Hours before the magnitude 5.1 happened, light to moderate earthquakes measuring from magnitudes 3.8 to 4.9 were also detected clustered in the same area as the strong earthquake’s location.
On Friday, a 4.2 magnitude earthquake shook the island of Trinidad and Tobago.
Residents from the islands have begun speculating on what these series of earthquake mean to their islands, and the Center was quick to clarify that the data “just means a release of energy along the fault line at that location.”
The UWI Seismic Research Centre urges residents to visit their website and notify them if the earthquake was felt in their area.
In the last two years, the Caribbean has witnessed three major earthquakes.
Two were in 2020, when a magnitude 7.7 earthquake hit Jamaica, Cuba, and Cayman Islands and a magnitude 6.4 in Puerto Rico.
And then in 2021, a 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck an already ailing Haiti a little more than a month after its president’s assassination.
Haiti is not stranger to strong earthquakes. In 2010, Haiti was decimated by a magnitude 7 earthquake that killed more than a hundred thousand people.
The Caribbean experiences more earthquakes because this region sits along the fault lines of the Caribbean plate.
“The region has high seismicity and a history of high magnitude earthquakes, including a magnitude 7.5 earthquake centered northwest of Puerto Rico in 1943 and magnitude 8.1 and 6.9 earthquakes north of Hispaniola in 1946 and 1953, respectively,” the NOAA Ocean Exploration explains.