California's Napa Valley earthquake losses could exceed $1 billion

California's Napa Valley earthquake losses could exceed $1 billion
(Image credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Early Sunday, a magnitude 6.0 earthquake struck the San Francisco Bay area, with its epicenter in Napa Valley, just north of Vallejo. The temblor destroyed homes, broke open gas lines and water mains, cracked open swimming pools, and sent at least 120 people to the hospital; there are no reported fatalities, though at least three people are listed in critical condition. At least 10,000 people had no power as of Sunday night. Gov. Jerry Brown (D) declared a state of emergency.

The U.S. Geological Survey estimates that the damage from the quake could be in the $1 billion range. At least some of those losses will be from wineries and wine collections — the earthquake sent bottles and casks shattering to the floor — though Reuters reports that only wineries and warehouses close to the city of Napa appear to have taken heavy losses.

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Peter Weber, The Week US

Peter has worked as a news and culture writer and editor at The Week since the site's launch in 2008. He covers politics, world affairs, religion and cultural currents. His journalism career began as a copy editor at a financial newswire and has included editorial positions at The New York Times Magazine, Facts on File, and Oregon State University.