Aug 13, 2012
The false earthquakes in the California cities of Gerber, Gilroy and Monterey all "measured" greater than 5.0 on the Richter scale.
Each fake quake was quickly reviewed by the USGS and corresponding reports were officially retracted by scientists.
A great number of news organizations, websites and blogs were sent alerts immediately after each ghost quake, including Californiality.
Within minutes, each quake alert was retracted by seismologists, creating temporary confusion.
Some of the false positive reports were reissued in error only to be retracted again, creating even more confusion as news monitors attempted to keep up with a growing list of artificial earthquakes across the state, which appeared real.
The numerous phantom earthquakes that "struck" California were registered by automatic seismic sensors belonging to the U.S. Geological Survey, which immediately began reviewing the quake reports one at a time.
Once the technological smoke cleared, it was apparent that no moderate or major earthquakes had struck California all evening, as state officials breathed a collective sigh of relief.