Stoke & Staffordshire

Stoke-on-Trent hit by small earth tremor

Seismologists have confirmed there was a small earth tremor in Stoke-on-Trent on Sunday morning.

It happened at 1035 BST according to Dr Ian Stimpson, a senior lecturer in Geophysics at Keele University.

He has described the tremor, which is not thought to have caused any damage, as "small and local" and probably down to a collapse within an old mine shaft.

The last earth tremors recorded in the city were in December 2009 when there were four seismic events in one month.

BBC Radio Stoke listener Richard Griffin, from Clayton, said: "All of a sudden the house shook and the dog jumped off the settee.

"It was only for a few seconds but it was quite sharp."

'Relatively common'

Dr Stimpson said tremors of this kind are not that unusual in the city.

He said: "Small tremors in the Stoke-on-Trent region are relatively common.

"We've got a long history of mining beneath the city and often we get small tremors associated with a collapse within the old mine workings."

He said it was difficult to determine the strength of the tremor at this stage.

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