Tracking earthquakes and their effect on North Texas

North Texans Take Earthquake Concerns to Austin

By Jeff Smith
|  Tuesday, Jan 21, 2014  |  Updated 12:52 PM CDT
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Dozens of Azle residents boarded a bus to Austin Tuesday morning to attend the Texas Railroad Commission meeting about the rash of recent earthquakes.

Jeff Smith, NBC 5

Dozens of Azle residents boarded a bus to Austin Tuesday morning to attend the Texas Railroad Commission meeting about the rash of recent earthquakes.

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North Texans Take Earthquake Concerns to Austin

Dozens of Azle residents are on their way to Austin Tuesday morning to attend the Texas Railroad Commission meeting about the rash of recent earthquakes.
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Dozens of Azle residents boarded a bus to Austin Tuesday morning to attend the Texas Railroad Commission meeting about the rash of recent earthquakes.

There were about 50 people on board the charter bus Tuesday, and several other vehicles followed along in a caravan of cars. Many residents brought along signs and placards.

“Earthquake Express,” read one sign.

“We’re making a stand. Something serious is going on here,” said homeowner Max Smith. “We haven’t gotten any assistance from the state.”

They said they want commissioners to know they are angry and they are demanding answers as well as a specific plan to keep them safe.

“We’re afraid this is going to destroy our community and the future of our children here.” Smith added.

There was unanimous consensus among the Austin-bound group headed that fracking -- a process used during the drilling for natural gas -- is behind all of the earthquakes. There have been 24 quakes near Azle since November, many of them powerful enough to rattle houses and move furniture. (Click here to see a Google map pinpointing all Northern Texas earthquakes recorded by the USGS since Nov., 2013.)

Because of all the earthquakes, residents say many homes have started to crack and sinkholes are forming in front yards.

The Railroad Commission has recently hired a seismologist and said it is investigating the possibility that fracking is behind the tremors, but will not definitively say the oil and gas procedure is the cause.

The Commission’s meeting begins at 9:30 a.m. in Austin. NBC 5's Julie Fine is in Austin and will update this story Tuesday as necessary.

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