How Earthquakes can affect Groundwater or Changes in Wells

The USGS identified a 3.2-magnitude earthquake near Timpson on September 4, 2018 at 10:06 a.m. The origination was 4.6 miles northwest of Timpson and about 3 miles deep, according to the USGS. According to the Longview News-Journal, readers of the Panola Watchman reported on facebook they felt the quake at Lake Murval, Fairplay and Gary.

5 miles from the epicenter of the earthquake shows portions of northwest Shelby County, southwest Panola County, and southeast Rusk County within that footprint.

“Groundwater levels in wells may oscillate up and down while seismic waves pass, and in some cases, the water level may remain higher or lower for a period of time after the seismic wavetrain has ended.” As quoted by the USGS online. Unwanted hydrogeologic responses in a well from an earthquake in our area of East Texas could mean turbidity levels increase temporarily creating adverse water quality and possibly minor infrastructure damage.

If you think your well was adversely affected contact your local Groundwater Conservation District (GCD) or the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation for areas outside of a GCD. These entities may be able to provide guidance to assist in addressing the issue.

Rusk County Groundwater Conservation District, (903)657-1900, 500 N. High St., Henderson, TX 75652,,

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