Swarm of earthquakes at Mount St. Helens

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by SUSAN WYATT / KING 5 News

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KING5.com

Posted on January 30, 2011 at 2:29 PM

Updated Monday, Jan 31 at 7:51 PM

MOUNT ST. HELENS, Wash. – A series of nine small earthquakes shook an area near Mount St. Helens over the weekend.

Seismologists at the University of Washington have been monitoring the quakes.

A 2.6 quake occurred at 2:26 p.m. on Saturday about six miles north of the volcano. Another quake, a 2.5, occurred at 2:44 p.m. in the same area. The depth for both quakes was two miles. Another quake occurred six miles north-northwest at 10:48 p.m. That measured 2.2 and was 2.2 miles deep.

Smaller quakes, ranging from magnitude 1.3 to 2.2, occurred on Sunday.

"It's something we're watching but we're not alarmed," said Bill Steele, Seismology Lab Coordinator for the Pacific Northwest Seismograph Network.

Steele said while St. Helens is an active volcano, it's also sitting on an area of tectonic weakness.

"It's kind of an interesting swarm but it's since quieted down," said Steele.

On Monday scientists said there were as many as 30 quakes in all over a period of several days.

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