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Sat, 17 Aug 2019
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Bizarro Earth

California's 'earthquake pause' is unprecedented

San Andreas Fault
© Shutterstock
The San Andreas Fault runs through the Carrizo Plain in California.
It's a little too quiet in California, seismically speaking.

The state is experiencing a century-long lull in large, ground-rupturing earthquakes, temblors that actually offset the earth at the surface. The 7.9-magnitude Great San Francisco Earthquake of 1906 was a ground-rupturing quake; photographs taken in its aftermath show roads and fences with new bends and twists.

Now, new research finds that this 100-year earthquake gap is very unlikely to be a statistical fluke. Instead, something geological is probably causing the peaceful period.

"We're unusually quiet," said study co-author Glenn Biasi, a geophysicist at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in Pasadena, California. "The biggest faults and the faults carrying most of the slip have not ponied up."


Earthquake swarm and huge "slow-slip" event at New Zealand's North Island

New Zealand 7.8 earthquake map
© Google Earth/ GNS Science
The 2016 Kaikoura earthquake was a magnitude 7.8 (Mw) earthquake in the South Island of New Zealand that occurred two minutes after midnight on 14 November 2016 NZDT (11:02 on 13 November UTC).
A swarm of earthquakes has been triggered off the North Island's east coast by a large seismic event similar to what preceded the 2011 Japanese quake and tsunami. GNS Science has confirmed one of the largest "slow-slips" ever observed in New Zealand is currently underway off the coast of Gisborne in the Hikurangi subduction zone.

This slow-slip began last week and so far scientists have recorded "up to 3cm of eastward displacement," said Wallace.

"This is caused by up to 10-15cm of movement on the Hikurangi plate boundary offshore of Gisborne."

While these events are fairly common, happening every one or two years, this slow-slip is on track to be "as large at the previous slow-slip" recorded off Gisborne in 2010.

Since Monday, 85 quakes have been recorded in the area.

Comment: Activity around the ring of fire has seen an uptick recently: A total of 12 major quakes, (Mag 6 or higher) occurred in March with all 12 recorded around the Pacific ring of fire

Also check out SOTT's monthly documentary: Earth Changes Summary - March 2019: Extreme Weather, Planetary Upheaval, Meteor Fireballs


Strong 6.3-magnitude earthquake strikes Dili, East Timor

The U.S. Geological Survey declared that an earthquake of a 6.3-magnitude has rattled 197 km NNW of Dili, East Timor at 21:55:01 GMT on Saturday.

The epicenter was initially located at 6.8491 degrees south latitude and 125.0425 degrees east longitude.

Meanwhile, the tremor hit 538.48 km deep into the ground.


6.6-magnitude quake hits off South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands

A 6.6-magnitude earthquake jolted 137km NNW of Visokoi Island, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands at 16:14:20 GMT on Friday, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

The epicenter, with a depth of 61.0 km, was initially determined to be at 55.5 degrees south latitude and 27.7 degrees west longitude.

Source: Xinhua


A total of 12 major quakes, (Mag 6 or higher) occurred in March with all 12 recorded around the Pacific ring of fire

March delivered 12 major quakes, (Mag 6 or higher) with the biggest being a Mag 7.0 - 25km NNE of Azangaro, Peru on the first day of March.

All 12 major quakes in March were recorded around the Pacific ring of fire, see map above.

So far, 2019 has recorded 33 major quakes with the biggest being a Mag 7.5 - 117km ESE of Palora, Ecuador in February, see the video below.

30 of the 33 major quakes recorded this year happened along the Pacific ring of fire.


Shallow magnitude 6.5 earthquake hits off Aleutian Islands, Alaska

A 6.5-magnitude earthquake was registered off the coast of Kiska in the Aleutian Islands near Alaska on Tuesday, the US Geological Survey (USGS) reported.

The quake was registered at 21:35 GMT. The epicentre of the earthquake was located 31 kilometres (19 miles) to the northeast of the island at a depth of 19.1 kilometres (12 miles). No casualties or damages have been reported.

The Aleutian Islands with their 57 volcanoes form the northernmost part of the Pacific Ring of Fire, where a large number of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions occur.


Strong shallow magnitude 6.0 earthquake hits off Mauritius

A 6.0-magnitude earthquake has been registered off the coast of Mauritius on Monday, the data of the United States Geological Survey (USGS) showed.

The quake was registered at 18:39 GMT. The epicentre of the earthquake was located 264 kilometres (164 miles) to the northeast of the town of Port Mathurin at a depth of 10 kilometres.

No casualties or damages have been reported.

The earthquakes with magnitude 6.0 up to 6.9 are considered to be strong earthquakes according to the Richter magnitude scale. Strong earthquakes can cause damage to some well-built structures in populated areas and are usually felt in wider areas with a range up to hundreds of miles/kilometres from the epicentre.


Strong 6.2-magnitude earthquake hits near the coast of Ecuador

There have been no immediate reports of damages and injuries as a result of the strong quake.

A 6.2 magnitude earthquake has hit the coast of Ecuador 27 kilometres north of the city of Santa Elena, according to the US Geological Survey (USGS).

According to the USGS, the quake struck at a depth of 18.5 km.

The quake was followed by numerous aftershocks, according to the EMSC.

According to The Watchers, there are around 1,560,000 people living within 100 km (62 miles) of the epicentre of the quake.


6.4-magnitude earthquake hits New Britain island, Papua New Guinea

A magnitude 6.4 earthquake hit Papua New Guinea's New Britain island, 300km east of Kandrian, on Saturday, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said.

The quake struck at 1130 GMT at a depth of 33 km, the Center added.

Source: Reuters


Magnitude 6.1 earthquake hits off Russia's Kuril Islands

Earthquake Kuril Islands
The new jolts followed Wednesday's magnitude 4.6 earthquake which was registered off the coast of the Russian Kamchatka Peninsula.

The so-called Kuril-Kamchatka Arc, which extends some 2,100 km from Hokkaido, Japan along the Kuril Islands and the Pacific coast of Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula, is one of the most seismically active regions in the world also known as the Ring of Fire.

According to the US Geological Survey, the epicenter of the quake - initially reported as a magnitude 6.5 - that struck east of the Kuril Islands on Friday morning local time, was 168 miles (270 km) east of the small town of Severo-Kurilsk. There have been no damages or casualties reported. The area is sparsely populated.

According to the Richter scale, earthquakes with a magnitude of 7.0- 7.9 are considered major and can cause severe damage. Quakes with a magnitude of 5.0-5.9 are considered to be moderate.