The earthquake hit at approximately 12 p.m. on Thursday. Courtesy of USGS

Isla Vista experienced a 5.3 magnitude earthquake on Thursday afternoon, according to United States Geological Services (USGS).

USGS reported the earthquake occurred approximately 17.4 miles southwest of Santa Cruz Island, California at 12:29 p.m. The agency initially said the earthquake’s depth was 10.4 miles, but later updated figure to 6.2 miles.

Several individuals in I.V. and on the UC Santa Barbara campus reported feeling a “rolling sensation” or a “jerk” when the earthquake hit.

Samantha Herrera, second-year sociology major

Matt Stahl, University Archivist

Kasey Calwell, third-year biology major

Kiana Broussard, first-year biology major

The earthquake most strongly hit Santa Cruz Island. The island was 14.9 miles from the epicenter, reaching intensity level “VI,” a level USGS uses to refer to incidents of strong shaking and light damage.

The earthquake impacted Isla Vista, Santa Barbara and Ventura at an intensity level of “IV,” indicating light shaking and no damage.

The Tsunami Warning Center reported there is no tsunami danger at this time.

The last major earthquake impacting Isla Vista was a magnitude of 3.8 and occurred on Jan. 6, about nine miles west of Isla Vista.


Sanya Kamidi
Sanya Kamidi serves as the Deputy News Editor and before that was a Social Media Manager. Loves coffee and will find any excuse to miss class for the Nexus. She can be reached at or @skamidi on Twitter.