SCEMD launches Earthquake.SC

Columbia, S.C. – South Carolina residents now have a new tool to help them be better prepared for earthquakes. Today, the South Carolina Emergency Management Division launched Earthquake.SC, an interactive website designed to guide people through the fundamentals of earthquakes in the Palmetto State and how to best prepare for them.

Designed to be a quick, adaptive and flexible online reference, Earthquake.SC is accessible on a desktop computer, a smartphone or a tablet.

The new website features several interactive sections including a Home Hazard Hunt, an interactive map displaying current and historical earthquakes, a walkthrough of the “Drop, Cover, Hold On” earthquake safety steps and much more. The “Myths and Facts” section, for example, addresses many of the urban legends and commonly asked questions concerning the state’s earthquake activity.

“We have experienced more than our fair share of low-magnitude earthquakes this year. None of them have been large enough to cause any damage, but we encourage everyone to be prepared for a major earthquake; however unlikely the possibility may be,” SCEMD Director Kim Stenson said. “Earthquake.SC is another tool in the toolbox for people to use when becoming their own emergency managers and being as ready as possible for earthquakes in South Carolina.”

Earthquake.SC is a virtual companion to SCEMD’s main website,, the SC Emergency Manager mobile app (which has earthquake notifications users can activate) and the printed South Carolina Earthquake Guide.

Our state normally experiences approximately 10 to 20 earthquakes annually; however, this year’s swarm of more than 80 low-magnitude earthquakes in Kershaw County highlights earthquakes can occur anywhere in South Carolina.

The epicenter of the largest earthquake ever recorded along the eastern United States seaboard was just outside of Charleston on August 31, 1886. The 7.3 magnitude quake devastated the region and was felt from Chicago to Cuba. According to a study commissioned by SCEMD, an earthquake of similar magnitude occurring today would result in tremendous loss of life, severe property damage and extreme economic loss.