A 5.7 magnitude earthquake hit near Salt Lake City on Wednesday, temporarily shutting down a major air traffic hub and leaving thousands without power. There were no reports of injuries. The quake damaged the spire and statue atop the iconic Salt Lake Temple. The epicenter was just southwest of Salt Lake City, between the airport and Great Salt Lake. It was felt by about 2.8 million people who were already confined to their homes due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Gov. Gary Herbert said, “This is extremely bad timing, because we already have the coronavirus issue going on right now causing a lot of anxiety.” Planes were diverted from Salt Lake City International Airport and the control tower and concourses were evacuated. Cargo and non-commercial flights resumed hours later, but commercial flights were delayed into the afternoon..
People reported feeling the quake in the neighboring states of Colorado, Idaho, Wyoming and Nevada. About 73,000 homes and businesses lost electricity in the Salt Lake City area, but power was quickly being restored in some areas, said utility Rocky Mountain Power.