The Knitting Nurse

Rambles and Travels

Earthquakes – 2 Rollers and 1 Shaker

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When I left for CA I was hoping I’d feel an earthquake.  Actually, I was afraid to but I really wanted to.  Kind of like going inner-tubing on Clear Creek last summer.

In two months I’ve felt three.  This, per locals, is a lot.

Sharing thoughts on the first on Facebook someone replied [something like] “Your first?  You haven’t been paying attention!” 

Turns out they happen throughout CA daily, seemingly almost hourly and upon researching this I learned they occur in parts of the US I never would have guessed.

Check out these real time  maps of  USA quakes and this one of worldwide quakes.

I think it’s positively fascinating and have been reading up.

Here’s the summary:

1) “Roller” at work, the day of the big one just over the Mexico/CA border, swayed on my feet with my jaw on the floor.

2) “Shaker” at 1150PM around a week ago.  Woke to a cracking “boom” and the condo shook. That was really scary.  My roomie and I were wired and couldn’t fall asleep for awhile after that.  Annabelle didn’t seem to notice. (They say pets act wierd before quakes.  She, obviously, is oblivious.)  Epicenter was south west of here just a bit near the Channel Islands.

3) “Roller” today. At work, did the swaying thing again. Some claimed to hear it. I couldn’t.  Work building is not earthquake safe.  Ground was just broke on a new facility for that reason.  I saw one posted east of here.

A few tid bits I’ve learned in my reading:

  • The San Andreas Fault Zone moves an average of 2″ per year.  Fingernails grow that much in a year.  (Try it! Just kidding.)  If that rate continues it’s estimated LA and S. Francisco will be neighbors in 15 million years.
  • It’s estimated there are 500,000 quakes per year with 100,000 felt and 100 causing damage.
  • Contrary to lore, there is no such thing as “earthquake weather.”
  • AK is the most e. quake-prone state.
  • Liquification: Once stable soil changes consistency to a fluid that cannot support structures (like buildings.) The 1964 quake in AK caused lots of this and, I read, destroyed the Valdez shoreline, spurring the rebuild of the town 7 km further inland.
  • Most quakes occur 50 miles or more underground.
  • In 1962 Denver experienced frequent tremors. Turns out, the army was injecting waste water into a fault surface, reducing friction and triggering fault slippage.  It stopped when they stopped.
  • There are email notifications one may subscribe to that notify you of quakes. Not sure I’m going there.

I’ve put a link on the sidebar to earthquake data real time maps.  And I’m watching them!

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