Friday’s magnitude 5.1 earthquake centered in La Habra was felt by an estimated 17 million people, and 16,000 of them used the U.S. Geological Survey’s Did You Feel It? online reporting system to provide seismologists with data on their experiences.
The Did You Feel It? system was created in 1999; before that, the USGS sent snail-mail questionnaires to people who lived in ZIP codes that had been affected by earthquakes. People filled out and returned the questionnaires, and the information they gave had to be compiled in a process that took months. Thanks, Internet: Now scientists have quick access to usable, sortable data from the public that helps establish the intensity of an earthquake and how far from its epicenter it was felt.
Here’s our full coverage of the earthquake and its aftershocks.
Photo: Cesar Zamora, night manager at the 99 Cents Only store on Imperial Highway, looks over aisles of fallen goods on March 28. Credit: Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times. More photos.
Until last year, more than 100,000 Muslims lived in Bangui, the decaying capital of the Central African Republic. Since the country plunged into anarchy a year ago, brutal sectarian violence has led tens of thousands to flee.
L.A. Times reporter Alexandra Zavis and photojournalist Rick Loomis followed a convoy of Muslim refugees on their harrowing 400-mile journey to safety in Cameroon, one of a handful of neighboring countries that are taking in refugees from the Central African Republic. This is the first of several of their reports on the region.
Since 1973, more than 100 earthquakes with a magnitude of 4 or higher have struck in the greater Los Angeles area. Our interactive map allows you to see the location, magnitude and date of each quake.
Friday’s 5.1 earthquake was a potent reminder of a fault that is less known to most Californians than the San Andreas, but that seismologists believe can produce a catastrophic disaster. That fault, the Puente Hills fault, is so dangerous because of its location, reporter Rong-Gong Lin II explains. Here’s our full coverage of Southern California’s recent earthquakes and an earthquake preparedness guide.
Map data: Southern California Earthquake Center
The population of L.A. County has passed 10 million, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. It’s the most populous county in the U.S., with nearly twice as many residents as the runner-up, Illinois’ Cook County.
Photo: The CicLAvia event in L.A. in 2013. Credit: Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times
Apple says it is working to bring more racial diversity to emoji.
"There needs to be more diversity in the emoji character set, and we have been working closely with the Unicode Consortium in an effort to update the standard," Katie Cotton, vice president of worldwide corporate communications at Apple, wrote in an email to MTV.
The movements of a newly discovered dwarf planet beyond Pluto’s orbit, dubbed 2012 VP113, suggest that a mysterious frontier of the solar system may include a planet much larger than Earth.
Experts say the discovery could lead scientists to rewrite our understanding of the fringes of our solar system.
Top images: The motion of 2012 VP113 clearly stands out compared with the steady state background stars and galaxies in these images, which were taken about two hours apart. Credit: Scott S. Sheppard / Carnegie Institution for Science. Bottom image: The three images combined into one to show the positions of 2012 VP113. Credit: Scott S. Sheppard / Carnegie Institution for Science.
Air pollution is linked to 1 in 8 deaths worldwide, according to a new report from the World Health Organization.
Photo: Heavily polluted air seen in the northern Chinese city of Harbin in October 2013. Credit: Associated Press
Meet Semirostrum ceruttii, the owner of the largest underbite ever found on a mammal. These now-extinct porpoises lived off the coast of California, and fossils have been found dating from 1.5 million to 5.3 million years ago.
Images: Artists’ reconstructions of the Semirostrum ceruttii. Top image: Pat Lynch / Yale. Bottom image: Bobby Boessenecker
If you’ve ever been to the TCL Chinese Theatre (formerly Mann’s, originally Grauman’s), you’ve probably walked over the handprints and footprints of Hollywood stars imprinted in the concrete. They’re a big tourist draw — you can see the stars’ signatures and compare your hands with the hands of the people on the big screen.
But the very first one was an accident.
The tradition was born after actress Norma Talmadge accompanied Sid Grauman — the theater magnate who was opening what is now a famous landmark — and other Hollywood stars to the site of the theater in 1927. At the construction site, Talmadge accidentally stepped in wet cement.
"When Grauman saw this, it gave him the idea of creating his own special hall of fame," a Feb. 3, 1958, Times story on a $400,000 renovation of the theater recounted.
Previously on L.A. Times Past:
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Recreational marijuana sales brought Colorado more than $2 million in tax revenue in January, the first month such sales were legal there, according to figures released by the state today.
Photo: A line of buyers trails from a store selling marijuana in Pueblo West, Colo., on Jan. 1, 2014. Credit: John Wark / Associated Press
L.A. and Orange counties contain more than half of the country’s most heavily crowded neighborhoods, a Times statistical analysis has found.
Rising rents aren’t helping. “A federal study three years ago found that between 1990 and 2009, rents in the Los Angeles metropolitan area rose more than 20% while the incomes of renters sagged 6%, after adjusting for inflation,” reporters Emily Alpert Reyes and Ryan Menezes note.
Get a better look at the most crowded areas in our interactive map, which lets you see what percentage of housing units are considered crowded in a particular zip code and compare the L.A. area to other cities in the U.S.
This is the true story of 14 tiger sharks, six Galapagos sharks, five sandbar sharks, five bluntnose sixgill sharks and a prickly shark, picked to swim in the ocean and have their lives taped to find out what happens when sharks stop being polite and start getting real.
Video: American Geophysical Union