IRVING (CBSDFW.COM) – While the City of Irving received no official reports of damage from a magnitude 3.4 earthquake over the weekend, residents who live around the epicenter have started to notice some minor things out of the ordinary.
Irving residents in the Hillcrest Oaks neighborhood off of MacArthur Blvd. surveyed their property today and in some cases found damage from the quake that shook the area just before midnight on Saturday.
Irving’s emergency operations center received more than 300 calls, mostly asking what was happening.
Residents believe nearby water injection wells for natural gas drilling caused the quake.
Jimmy Taylor is one of those residents. He lives near the center of the weekend tremor and experienced one previously while living in Bedford. “I don’t like it one bit we never had them before until they started doing the fracking in the area.”
While earthquakes are rare in the DFW area, there have been a handful since 1990.
UT Dallas Geologist John Ferguson says water injecting gas wells are behind the increase. He points to a recent report by SMU and the University of Texas which studied 11 earthquakes in North Texas between 2008 and 2009 and concluded that ‘it seems likely that fluid injection induced’ the tremors.
“We think that earthquakes around this size are probably as large as they get,” says Ferguson, but that offers little comfort to those who experienced the quake.