California military base still closed following big quakes

National

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A sprawling military base in the Southern California desert remains closed to non-essential personnel as damage assessments continue following last week’s powerful earthquakes.

Spokeswoman Margo Allen said Tuesday that teams have so far surveyed just 10% of the 1,200 facilities at Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake. It’s unclear when personnel and their families will be able to return.

Two strong quakes — a 6.4 and a 7.1 — struck Thursday and Friday near Ridgecrest, just outside the 1.2-million-acre base in the Mojave Desert.

Water and gas service have been restored, but engineers are making sure buildings are safe to enter. Allen says the shaking cracked walls in a chapel and school and brought down commissary shelves.

She says one person suffered a minor foot injury.

Some personnel were evacuated to the naval base in Ventura County.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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