Northridge Earthquake: The First Day in Photos

The magnitude-6.7 earthquake that struck Northridge around 4:30 a.m. on Jan. 17, 1994 caused chaos in the first 24 hours after it occurred. Major roadways were destroyed, fires raged and residents panicked the day the quake hit.

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AP
FILE - In this Jan. 17, 1994 file photo, Interstate 10, the Santa Monica Freeway, split and collapsed over La Cienega Boulevard following the Northridge quake in the predawn hours in Los Angeles. Twenty-five years ago this week, a violent, pre-dawn earthquake shook Los Angeles from its sleep, and sunrise revealed widespread devastation, with dozens killed and $25 billion in damage. (AP Photo/Eric Draper, File)
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FILE - This Jan. 17, 1994 file photo shows bricks and debris surrounding a building housing Ara's Pastry on Hollywood Boulevard in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles, following the Northridge earthquake. Twenty-five years ago this week, on Jan. 17, 1994, a violent, pre-dawn earthquake shook Los Angeles from its sleep, and sunrise revealed widespread devastation, with dozens killed and $25 billion in damage. (AP Photo/Rene Macura, File)
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FILE - In this Jan. 17, 1994, file photo, the covered body of Los Angeles Police Officer Clarence Wayne Dean lies near his motorcycle which plunged off the State Highway 14 overpass that collapsed onto Interstate 5, after a magnitude-6.7 Northridge earthquake in Los Angeles. Twenty-five years ago this week, a violent, pre-dawn earthquake shook Los Angeles from its sleep, and sunrise revealed widespread devastation, with dozens killed and $25 billion in damage. (AP Photo/Doug Pizac, File)
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FILE - This Feb. 14, 1994 file photo shows California State University, Northridge students walking past a parking structure at the Los Angeles campus that collapsed in the Jan. 17 earthquake. Twenty-five years ago this week, a violent, pre-dawn earthquake shook Los Angeles from its sleep, and sunrise revealed widespread devastation, with dozens killed and $25 billion in damage. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, File)
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FILE - In this Jan. 17, 1994 file photo, gas from a ruptured supply line burns as water from a broken water main floods Balboa Boulevard in the Granada Hills area of Los Angeles. The fire from the gas main destroyed two homes, right. Twenty-five years ago this week, the violent, pre-dawn earthquake shook Los Angeles from its sleep, and sunrise revealed widespread devastation, with dozens killed and $25 billion in damage. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi, File)
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FILE - This Jan. 17, 1994 file photo shows California State Route 118 in Simi Valley, Calif., that collapsed during the Northridge earthquake. Twenty-five years ago this week, a violent, pre-dawn earthquake shook Los Angeles from its sleep, and sunrise revealed widespread devastation, with dozens killed and $25 billion in damage. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, File)
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AP
FILE - This Feb. 16, 1994 file photo shows the Northridge Meadows apartment complex in which 16 people died when the upper floors collapsed onto the so-called soft story ground floor. Twenty-five years ago this week, a violent, pre-dawn earthquake shook Los Angeles from its sleep, and sunrise revealed widespread devastation, with dozens killed and $25 billion in damage. At 4:31 a.m. on Jan. 17, 1994, a hidden fault lurking under the city’s San Fernando Valley neighborhoods unleashed a magnitude 6.7 earthquake. (AP Photo/Nick Ut, File)
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FILE - This Jan. 17, 1994 file photo shows a portion of the Bullock's department store in Los Angeles' Northridge Fashion Center that collapsed in the Northridge earthquake. Twenty-five years ago this week, a violent, pre-dawn earthquake shook Los Angeles from its sleep, and sunrise revealed widespread devastation, with dozens killed and $25 billion in damage. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, File)
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AFP/Getty Images
With help from a friend, Tigran Daniyelyan (L) carries his television from his apartment complex that was destroyed by the Northridge earthquake. Officials are placing the death toll at 28. (TIM CLARY/AFP/GettyImages)
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UIG via Getty Images
A Santa Monica apartment building was destroyed by the Northridge earthquake in 1994 (Photo by Visions of America/UIG via Getty Images)
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AFP/Getty Images
Aeria view of wrecked cars littered the connector ramp from Interstate 5 to Highway 14 following the Northridge earthquake, on Jan. 17, 1994, in Northridge, California. (CARLOS SCHIEBECK/AFP/Getty Images)
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KNBC-TV
The 5 Freeway and 14 Freeway interchange was split in half after the earthquake struck.
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Just hours after the quake struck, a good Samaritan in the city of San Fernando began evacuating neighbors in a school bus.
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Fireballs erupted from a ruptured gas line, and streets flooded from a water main break at Rinaldi Street and Balboa Boulevard in Granada Hills.
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A law enforcement officer is killed when the 14 Freeway collapsed near the quake.
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Houses caught fire and were captured by NBC4 helicopter footage around 8:16 a.m. on the day of the quake.
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President Clinton speaks on television just less than six hours after the Northridge earthquake struck. "We intend to do everything we possibly can to help the people ofnLos Angeles and Southern California to deal with the earthquake and its aftermath," Clinton said.
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A 64-car freight train carrying hazardous material derailed in the Chatsworth/Northridge area. The footage was captured about 9:30 a.m.
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Dozens of emergency room patients waited for treatment in the Granada Hills Community Hospital parking lot around 10 a.m., about six hours after the quake shook the area.
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KNBC-TV
NBC4's Conan Nolan holds up a seismograph reading of the magnitude 6.6 earthquake. The quake was officially named "Northridge Earthquake" several hours after it struck.
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Fire crews spent hours trying to rescue a man from a collapsed Northridge parking structure. Crews lowered airbags to lift the rubble. Salvador Pena was eventually was rescued and survived the deadly quake.
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Firefighters battled a blaze at a home on Normandie Avenue north of Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard around 1:50 p.m.
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Several cars were crushed when an apartment building collapsed in Sherman Oaks.
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An influx of drivers crowded the Arco station at Sherman Way and Balboa Boulevard around 3:45 p.m. trying to get gas to leave the area.
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Panicked residents cleared water, food and other supplies from the shelves of a Ralph's supermarket in Panorama City.
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Fire crews battled an intense fire in Granada Hills around 6 p.m.
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The 10 Freeway at La Cienega buckled as a result of the earthquake that struck Northridge around 4:30 a.m.
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KNBC-TV
Police permitted some 1,000 residents to camp at a park on 1st Stree and Park Avenue in San Fernando after the destruction caused by the Northridge Earthquake.
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UIG via Getty Images
A destroyed apartment building near the epicenter of the Northridge earthquake in 1994 (Photo by Visions of America/UIG via Getty Images)
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UIG via Getty Images
An overpass collapsed on the 10 Freeway in the Northridge/Reseda area at the epicenter of the earthquake (Photo by Visions of America/UIG via Getty Images).
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Getty Images
A man bicycled through a flooded road Jan. 17, 1994 caused by the Northridge earthquake in the greater Los Angeles. The Northridge earthquake was the first earthquake to strike directly under an urban area of the United States since the 1933 Long Beach earthquake. (Photo by David Hume Kennerly/Getty Images)
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Getty Images
Pedestrians walked along a flooded road caused by the Northridge earthquake. (Photo by David Hume Kennerly/Getty Images)
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AFP/Getty Images
Smashed cars were stranded by the collapsed Interstate 5 connector just a few hours after Northridge earthquake in Sylmar, California. Federal officials said freeways suffered at least $100 million in damage. (JONATHAN NOUROK/AFP/Getty Images)
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AFP/Getty Images
Firemen carried a janitorial worker who was rescued from a collapsed garage at the Northridge Mall after the earthquake. (DENIS POROY/AFP/Getty Images)
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Alex Matthews
A rescue worker sits on curb in front of the heavily-damaged Northridge Meadows Apartments after a 14th body was removed following Northridge earthquake. (CHRIS WILKINS/AFP/Getty Images)
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AFP/Getty Images
A resident and a cameraman looked at damage to the Kaiser Permanente Building following the Northridge earthquake. (HAL GARB/AFP/Getty Images)
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UIG via Getty Images
A car at a Mazda dealership was crushed in the Northridge earthquake. (Photo by Visions of America/UIG via Getty Images)
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AFP/Getty Images
At night, a gas main on fire throws flames into the air after it broke and exploded destroying nearby homes following the Northridge earthquake. There were a total of 466 fires reported on Jan. 17, three of them simultaneously broke out immediately following the earthquake and were due of the rupture of natural gas valves and/or mains. (HAL GARB/AFP/Getty Images)
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LA City Emergency Management Department
A view of the collapsed 5 Freeway connector Jan. 17, 2019 in Sylmar following the Northridge earthquake.
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UIG via Getty Images
A demolished building at Olympic Blvd after the Northridge earthquake in 1994 (Photo by Visions of America/UIG via Getty Images)
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UIG via Getty Images
An apartment building burned as a result of the Northridge earthquake. (Photo by Visions of America/UIG via Getty Images)
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