A minor earthquake was felt in the Jerusalem area this morning (Thursday). According the Israel Geophysical Institute, the quake measured 3.5 on the Richter scale. There were no reports of injury or damage.
According to the Institute, the quake occurred at 4:20 Am local time. The epicenter of the quake was in an area north of the Dead Sea, about 30 kilometers outside Jerusalem. Residents of Jerusalem and its eastern suburbs reported feeling the tremor.
Last June, an earthquake measuring 4.8 on the Richter scale was felt in southern Israel. In May 2012, an earthquake measuring 5.3 on the Richter scale with its epicenter in Cyprus was felt throughout Israel. More than a 100 calls by concerned citizens were received in the northern city of Tzfat alone, reports said. The quake was felt as far as Bat Yam, Kfar Saba, Ramat Hasharon, Ra'anana and other areas in central Israel.
In recent years, school children around the country, from kindergarten age and up, have participated in annual earthquake drills in their schools, practicing safe steps to take when the ground starts shaking.
In a recent interview, Dr. Ephraim Laor, who headed the National Steering Committee for Earthquake Preparedness, told Arutz Sheva that each Israeli must prepare himself for a major earthquake that could hit Israel. Experts have warned that Israel is expected to be hit by a major earthquake in the coming years.