The biggest earthquakes may cause structural damage to your house and destroy public infrastructure, but even the moderate ones can cause a lot of damage .
Is the Pacific Northwest about to be wiped out in a massive earthquake? A New Yorker article on the region’s seismic vulnerabilities has provoked widespread interest in the subject, if not outright panic. At issue is the Cascadia Subduction Zone, which is primed to unleash an earthquake that may go down as America’s worst natural disaster in recorded history. From the piece, one quote has stood out from a FEMA regional official: “Our operating assumption is that everything west of Interstate 5 will be toast.”
A GEOLOGIST has warned a devastating earthquake and tsunami could hit the United States, potentially threatening millions of lives, within the next 24 hours.
Mr Berkland he is most concerned about the the San Andreas Fault through California and the Cascadia Subduction Zone, which is further north along the coast of Oregon and Washington State.
He says both areas are long over due a so-called “Big One” earthquake and would likely cause devastating tsunamis to surge over the west coast if it happened.
California may be about to be hit by a massive magnitude 7 earthquake after geologists discovered a succession of smaller tremors under a lake near the San Andreas fault.
An earthquake warning – stating that a quake is more likely in the next three days – has been issued by the California Office of Emergency Services after fears that the rumblings may trigger a much larger quake affecting the southern part of state, including Los Angeles, San Diego and San Bernardino.
"Any time there is significant seismic activity in the vicinity of the San Andreas fault, we seismologists get nervous," said Thomas Jordan, director of the Southern California Earthquake Centre. "We recognise that the probability of having a large earthquake goes up."
A big fear is that the rupturing of the southern portion of the San Andreas fault could cause a domino effect along the entire stretch, cracking the fault from Imperial County through to Los Angeles County. Another possibility is that the Salton Sea swarm could cause the nearby San Jacinto fault system to rupture, which would in turn trigger the collapse of the San Andreas Fault.
Should the Big One hit, it won’t be pretty. Models predict a quake across the southern half of California with a magnitude around 7.8. Such a quake would cause an estimated 1,800 deaths, 50,000 injuries, and over $200 billion in damage.
He said: “Beware the new and full moons.”
He says this causes "equinoctal tides", which are extreme gravitational forces that cause solid earth to expand and contract, in the way ocean tides rise and fall.
The Big One – the Cascadia subduction zone
The world’s largest faults are associated with subduction zones and have produced earthquakes in the M 9 range! The last great earthquake on the Cascadia subduction zone occurred in 1700, a little over 300 years ago. Geologists have found evidence for at least 13 great Cascadia earthquakes during the past 7,000 years—and estimate they occur irregularly at intervals anywhere between 200 and 800 years. The next Cascadia earthquake may be similar to the earthquake that set off the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. It could cause strong ground shaking from Northern California to southern Canada lasting for five minutes or longer. It will also produce a tsunami that could affect not only our coast, but other countries throughout the Pacific basin.
Some people think it is not worth preparing for an earthquake or a tsunami because whether you survive or not is up to chance. NOT SO! Most Northern California buildings will survive even a large earthquake, and so will you, especially if you follow the simple guidelines in this handbook and start preparing today. If you know how to recognize the warning signs of a tsunami and understand what to do, you will survive that too—but you need to know what to do ahead of time!
This handbook will help you prepare for earthquakes and tsunamis in Northern California. It explains how you can prepare for, survive, and recover from them. It also describes what you can do today to save lives, reduce injuries, and minimize damage.
Government agencies and other emergency organizations cannot protect you from the next earthquake or tsunami. Even under the best of circumstances, medical aid or fire and law enforcement officials may not be able to reach you for many hours, or even days. It is our responsibility as individuals, neighborhoods and communities to reduce risks, to prepare for the critical period immediately after the earthquake, and to make sure that planning for earthquakes and tsunamis has the high priority it deserves. By becoming informed, we can take actions to protect ourselves, reduce losses, and recover quickly.
CREATE A DISASTER PREPAREDNESS PL
Will everyone in your household know what to do during the violent shaking of a strong earthquake or when a tsunami warning has been issued? Do you know how to get in touch with each other afterwards? Before the next earthquake or tsunami, talk to your family, housemates or co-workers and plan what each person will do before, during and after.
After the shaking stops or the waves recede, power, utilities, communication systems and roads may be out, fires and chemical spills may occur, or you may be separated from children, pets and other family members. By planning now, you will be ready. Planning for earthquakes and tsunamis will also prepare you for other more frequent emergencies such as storms, fires, and flooding.
PREPARE DISASTER Supply KITS
Everyone should have personal disaster supply kits.
Keep them where you spend most of your time, so they can be reached even if your building is damaged or if you need to quickly evacuate out of a tsunami hazard zone. Keep one kit in your home, another in your car, and a third kit at work.
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