Another quake hits area near D&L well in Youngstown

Staff report


Despite the state’s insistence that a brine injection well on Ohio Works Drive, off Salt Springs Road, isn’t the reason for seven earthquakes that have occurred in Youngstown since March, another was recorded at 1:47 a.m. Friday in the same area.

Friday’s magnitude 2.1 quake had an epicenter at U.S. Route 422 and state Route 711 in Youngstown, close to the D&L Energy Inc. brine injection well, which is near V&M Star.

The Lamont-Doherty Cooperative Seismographic Network reported Friday’s earthquake. Seven of the eight quakes had an epicenter near Ohio Works Drive.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources said this week it believes there is no correlation between the well, which goes down into the Precambrian formation — which dates from the formation of the Earth until about 542 million years ago and lies about 9,000 feet below the ground — and the earthquakes, which started March 17.

The March earthquake was the first one ever recorded with an epicenter in Mahoning County.

ODNR still will require D&L to test the well and possibly plug the bottom with concrete to “eliminate any perceived accusations.”

The depth of Friday’s earthquake, like the previous seven, registered at 5 kilometers, about 7,500 feet below the well, though seismologists have said no accurate depth can be determined without multiple seismograph readings.

The March 17 quake was a magnitude 2.6. Earthquakes between 2.0 and 3.0 are felt by a few people, usually those at rest and usually in the upper floors of buildings, according the U.S. Geological Survey.

The city experienced a magnitude 2.2 earthquake in August, and the one in late September registered 2.5 to 2.6. It produced booming and crashing noises throughout the Mahoning Valley but wasn’t strong enough to do any damage.

The first six earthquakes had magnitudes ranging from 2.2 to 2.6.

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