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Midwestern Fault Zones Are Still Alive

samzenpus posted about 9 months ago | from the waiting-for-the-big-one dept.

Earth 115

sciencehabit writes "The occasional quakes rattling the New Madrid Seismic Zone, a series of Midwestern faults named for a small town in the Missouri Bootheel, aren't aftershocks of the massive quakes that rocked our fledgling nation more than 2 centuries ago, a new study suggests. In other words, modern-day quakes are signs that the faults in the region are still accumulating stress—and sometimes releasing it as fresh rumblings."

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Oh, Frack (4, Interesting)

postbigbang (761081) | about 9 months ago | (#46052129)

Can't be all that juice pumped into the ground.

Re:Oh, Frack (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46052199)

Can't be all that juice pumped into the ground.

Well it could be. But you've just demonstrated the difference between faith and science. You have faith that fracking is bad and thus ascribe to it all manner of devilry. Meanwhile scientists collect and study the data, trying to eliminate theories, rather than just seizing onto one charismatic idea to cherish and hold as the One True Faith.

Re:Oh, Frack (1)

bob_super (3391281) | about 9 months ago | (#46052219)

Have they eliminated the Area51-based top-secret earthquake generator yet?

MOD HIM DOWN MOD HIM NOW!!!1 (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46052485)

Still have a few oil company shills lurking the influential threads of Slashdot, I see.

Follow the money - as in, yours (4, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 9 months ago | (#46053323)

Still have a few oil company shills lurking the influential threads of Slashdot, I see.

There is a LOT of oil money from the Gulf trying to put a lid on Fracking. Nice to see the AC's are getting paid handsomely to try and stomp out independence from a barbaric region of the earth.

shhhhhhh! You were not supposed to notice... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46053517)

all that Arab oil money that funded the Matt Daemon anti-fracking film. Fracking and American jobs BAD! Arab oil and dependence on unstable 6th century dictatorships GOOD!

We all KNOW "big oil" is EVIL (when it's run by Americans or Europeans) but it's WONDERFUL (when it's run by Arabs, and) when it funds the anti-fracking efforts and some of the activists who fight against American/Canadian/British oil and coal (supporting windmills and solar panels, which can never meet a significant percentage of U.S. energy needs) leaving the U.S. in need of Arab oil...

Re:shhhhhhh! You were not supposed to notice... (1)

jddeluxe (965655) | about 9 months ago | (#46053625)

Actually it is 9th-11th century...

Re:Oh, Frack (4, Funny)

flyneye (84093) | about 9 months ago | (#46054977)

Meanwhile, we are getting tremors here, where there used to be NO tremors and it all started when the Okies started fracking.
What would you say that is? The Teletubbies having a party?
It's fracking and frankly it needs to stop. The Okies are having the worst of it and want it to stop from what I see of their newscasts, but as usual, corporate interests are saying;" We'll look into this, after while, when we get time, if we remember."
Well what a bunch of dumbshits. We just don't need the extra gas that fucking bad. If you think you do, go live in Oklahoma then blow off your fucking mouth.

Re:Oh, Frack (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46056383)

Flyneye,

There are fault lines throughout the Midwest. There are also minor tremors associates with said fault lines. There is also minor seismic activity caused by explosives used for mining. I don't know where you get your cherry picked information or propaganda. On second thought, I don't really want to know where you get you misinformation.

By the way, Oklahoma can be a pretty nice place to live... I suggest to stop by and visit some time. If you want, I'd record the Teletubbies for you on my DVR.

Re:Oh, Frack (2)

bobbied (2522392) | about 9 months ago | (#46052467)

They where doing that in 1911-2? Wow, Fracking has been going on a LONG time then..

Re:Oh, Frack (-1)

swalve (1980968) | about 9 months ago | (#46052499)

Sure, that makes perfect sense. Some juice from the back of a tanker truck can bend a tectonic plate?

Re:Oh, Frack (2)

Dereck1701 (1922824) | about 9 months ago | (#46053135)

My geology is a little rusty, but I don't think any amount of human activity can "create" full fledged earthquakes. Some activities can encourage an already building earthquake to occur before it would naturally, but not create one from nothing or even enhance one that is building. In some cases this could actually be a plus, it would probably be preferable to have a few 6.0 quakes that you can roughly predict rather than one 8.5 quake that you don' t have a clue when it will occur.

Re:Oh, Frack (3, Insightful)

postbigbang (761081) | about 9 months ago | (#46053165)

Correlation doesn't equal causation.

That said, there is a statistical incidence that wants to correlate heavy fracking with earthquakes. Whether the New Madrid is just unstable, or becoming unstabilized with mounting fracking is unknown. The statistical correlation between seismic movements and fracking remains, however.

So turn on the tap, and light your cigar.

Re:Oh, Frack (2)

dugancent (2616577) | about 9 months ago | (#46053279)

I lived in Indiana in 2008 when the 5.4 earthquake happened. It was in the wabash seismic area and there was no fraking going on at the time.

Same with the Virginia earthquake. Again, no fraking was happening any where near a fault.

Re:Oh, Frack (2)

postbigbang (761081) | about 9 months ago | (#46053319)

It's true Indiana doesn't have fracking; I believe the same is true of Virginia. Indiana doesn't quite lay on the New Madrid, rather it's to the S and W of Indiana-- look on a map.

Is fracking a contributor? Some evidence says yes.

Re:Oh, Frack (1)

dugancent (2616577) | about 9 months ago | (#46053825)

No, it's not on the new Madrid fault, it is on the wabash valley fault, which is somehow related, or so I read.

Re:Oh, Frack (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 9 months ago | (#46054951)

I lived in Indiana in 2008 when the 5.4 earthquake happened. It was in the wabash seismic area and there was no fraking going on at the time.

If you could please explain what that has to do with current seismicity while fracking is going on, that'd really be a help.

Care to publish your source? (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 9 months ago | (#46053313)

there is a statistical incidence that wants to correlate heavy fracking with earthquakes

No, there is not. REAL studies produce no such link. Lots of luddite anti-Frackers like to claim it's so though.

Re:Care to publish your source? (2)

postbigbang (761081) | about 9 months ago | (#46053379)

Liar liar well on fire:

http://features.blogs.fortune.... [cnn.com] http://crooksandliars.com/susi... [crooksandliars.com] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/... [huffingtonpost.com] https://www.utexas.edu/news/20... [utexas.edu]

So obvious (3, Informative)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 9 months ago | (#46053495)

Liar liar well on fire:

What are you, ten?

So sad you can't even do basic Google searches, all of your links have been
debunked [bloomberg.com] .

You really will believe anything your masters spoon-feed you, won't you? What a shame that critical thinking has been so totally disabled by the green movement, once you strong and useful, now just a tool to be used by Arab oil interests to stop franking from slowing down the money flow.

I guess you have no interests in stopping the flow of money from the west going to prop up cultures that horribly abuse women and homosexuals. You may as well be casting stones yourself.

Re:So obvious (3, Insightful)

postbigbang (761081) | about 9 months ago | (#46053547)

Ends don't justify the means. You all but admit the monetary motivations. I don't justify the maltreatment of people anywhere. Not even in Texas.

Nah, even those University of Texas resources can't be believed.

Tell me this: are you an astroturfer? Do you get paid to shill for these guys? I'll take an honest answer. If you really believe this, I'll criticize no further.

We're far from agreement on the issue of fracking, however. I believe it's detrimental, and holds down the inevitable transition to other less-caustic fuel sources.

Re:So obvious (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46053643)

Tell me this: are you an astroturfer? Do you get paid to shill for these guys? I'll take an honest answer.

Why even ask this? If he wasn't, the answer would be no, and if he was, the answer would be no. I'm not sure what you hope to get, other than to declare answers you don't like as "not honest" and move the goal posts, since if you were going to give the benefit of the doubt, you could have already done so. At least if you interact with various people enough in normal, off-line life to see that there are plenty of people who don't believe all of the problems attributed to fracking have been actually demonstrated, and that the chances of a particular person disagreeing with is a lot less than many would want to claim.

Re:So obvious (1, Interesting)

postbigbang (761081) | about 9 months ago | (#46053775)

Well, there was that "Kendall" in his name. Once in a while, there is a response that enlightens you as to the context of such responders, so as to be able to decide if long interaction is worthwhile or nihilistic.

So I march on, until there's a stop point that often corroborates suspicions with more data. Once in a while you can hit the right button on a LIbertarian, and all sorts of stuff flies out their butts in this cavalcade of WTFs. If nothing else, it provides awe and humor value for the immense diversity of humanity.

And other times, it's a stick up the hornet's next. I like to wear gloves on those missions, but sometimes it's just worth the honey.

Re:So obvious (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46053957)

So in other words, while complaining that pro-fracing people are doing so under false pretense, motivated by money, you make anti-fracking posts under false pretense, motivated by entertainment.

Re:So obvious (1)

unixcorn (120825) | about 9 months ago | (#46057369)

We are all shills for something. It seems you are a shill for some sort of environmental group. Do YOU get paid to post your opinions? Face it, nobody really knows what fracking is doing if anything at all.

Re:So obvious (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 9 months ago | (#46054963)

So sad you can't even do basic Google searches, all of your links have been
debunked.

It's so sad that you can't even understand basic science. One study which disagrees does not automatically invalidate all other studies. Keep trying, you'll get it never. This is your second bullshit unfounded FUD post I've responded to in a row today.

Re:Oh, Frack (1)

fast turtle (1118037) | about 9 months ago | (#46053381)

I guess the earth effects of a 100Kt Nuke doesn't count then. How in hell do you think we detect underground testing other then through Seismic sensors?

Re:Oh, Frack (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46056329)

Also, if there is building instability, isn't it better to release the pressure early?

I'd rather have 100 4.0s than one 6.0.

Re:Oh, Frack (1)

fermion (181285) | about 9 months ago | (#46053293)

It is general considered, under current research, that the pumping of water, resulting from fracking or oil extraction, back into the ground does cause a load sufficient to trigger a fault. This is not faith. It is simply a hypothesis that seems to gaining evidence. Fracking itself does not seem to a antecedent to seismic events. In the case of Missouri, there does not seem to be any waste disposal, but calling this faith simply shows a inability to process new information.

Re:Oh, Frack (1)

postbigbang (761081) | about 9 months ago | (#46053347)

No one is doing a lot of work to prove it one way or another. It's best to watch Justin Beiber get busted, rather than do any real research. Sign.

Re:Oh, Frack (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46056311)

Anything's possible. But I remember small quakes in the Midwest region for over 40 years. Before I would blame fracking, I'd seriously investigate powerful people and corporations who oppose fracking. Fracking is a huge industry changer. Some people, particularly overseas don't take lightly to fracking.

And by the way, I don't work for an oil company. I don't know anyone who does. And I don't trust politicians or corporate spokespersons either. I don't particularly trust people with an agenda either - a green agenda or otherwise.

Re:Oh, Frack (1)

trongey (21550) | about 9 months ago | (#46056607)

Can't be all that juice pumped into the ground.

Can be, but you're looking at the wrong process. Overly aggressive wastewater injection is the more likely culprit.

Fuck Amerika (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46052155)

Fuck Amerika and fuck this story!

Re:Fuck Amerika (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46052205)

Fuck Amerika and fuck this story!

And Fuck you! And fuck your mother - no really, fuck her. She was awesome!

Midwest (1)

bob_super (3391281) | about 9 months ago | (#46052165)

The best thing that could happen to Midwest geography would be growing a mountain range... An east-west one, so that it'd be tolerable in winter, as long as you're south of it, and tolerable in summer, as long as you're north.

Re:Midwest (4, Funny)

ackthpt (218170) | about 9 months ago | (#46052351)

The best thing that could happen to Midwest geography would be growing a mountain range... An east-west one, so that it'd be tolerable in winter, as long as you're south of it, and tolerable in summer, as long as you're north.

You and Lex Luthor think alike.

Re:Midwest (1)

bob_super (3391281) | about 9 months ago | (#46052591)

Yes, I guess someone at Marvel grew up in the midwest.

--
Keep your hand on the rod, and your finger on the line; you would see better from above the bridge.

Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

Toe, The (545098) | about 9 months ago | (#46052185)

This segues nicely with a question I've been idly wondering.

Consider all natural disasters, such as earthquakes, tornados, volcanoes, hurricanes, forest fires (kinda natural), tsunamis, mudslides, etc.

Now consider all human safety factors, such as crimes of violence, unsafe nuclear/chemical plants, likelihood of being targeted/invaded by a foreign entity, random government oppression, and so on. And I suppose you should consider automobile fatality rates (which probably outweigh all other factors combined).

Plus toss in random other safety factors such as poisonous insects/spiders/snakes, rising ocean levels, and whatnot.

Now where in the world would you say is the safest place to live?

Maybe central Canada somewhere?

I'm just askin'. It't not like I live my life by these considerations (though I have shied away from Western North America a bit... ya know, 'cause o the big one [wikipedia.org] ).

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

bob_super (3391281) | about 9 months ago | (#46052211)

Your parent's basement. That's why so many geeks stay in there as long as they can.

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46052275)

i have thought that central canada was pretty good, if you can handle winters. i used the same kind of criteria. if i won a big lottery, that is where i would have a home. of course, if the yellowstone caldera blows, all bets are off.

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

MillionthMonkey (240664) | about 9 months ago | (#46052321)

Now where in the world would you say is the safest place to live?

Prison.

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

bobbied (2522392) | about 9 months ago | (#46052431)

Depends on what you are IN for... If you are an X-cop or a pedophile, you'd rather be next on death row...

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46052979)

If you are an X-cop

Those mutants, always finding their evil, unnatural ways to harm officers of the law! ;)

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

Dahamma (304068) | about 9 months ago | (#46052407)

Maybe central Canada somewhere?

Nah, if the power went out for an extended period (or for good, if you are in a bad JJ Abrams show), you'd be screwed in the winter.

But I guess it depends if you are talking apocalyptic events (or even major natural disasters) vs. everyday risks. Because you are so many orders of magnitude more likely to die from one of the latter that the former isn't worth worrying about unless you are the obsessive type.

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

rueger (210566) | about 9 months ago | (#46053067)

Central Canada (ontario) has experienced three multi-day widespread power outages within recent memory - two of them during the winter.

If a reliable and robust electricity grid is important to you you should look somewhere else.

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46053869)

Ontario is not central Canada. Are you one of the people that thinks Ohio is in the central part of the U.S?

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (2)

LunaticTippy (872397) | about 9 months ago | (#46052443)

Traffic accidents kill more people than natural disasters by orders of magnitude, and "lifestyle" diseases such as cancer and heart disease dwarf all else.

Logically, the safest place to life is somewhere you are happy and able to stay physically active and don't have to drive much. If it happens to be earthquakey or spidery don't waste your time worrying because it'll be lost in the statistical noise.

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

bobbied (2522392) | about 9 months ago | (#46052511)

If it happens to be earthquakey or spidery don't waste your time worrying because it'll be lost in the statistical noise.

At least until buildings fall on top of you and thousands of your neighbors.

It's like saying flying is safe. Yea, it is, but when there is a major incident and you are on board, chances are pretty good you are not walking away alive.

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

HiThere (15173) | about 9 months ago | (#46053183)

The interesting thing is that recent archaeological investigations have tended to show that cancer and heart disease (what you cal "lifestyle diseases") were equally common in ancient egypt and (to the extent it's determinable, small sample, poor evidence) among paleolithic hunter-gatherers.

The evidence isn't conclusive yet, but then neither is the evidence that they actually *are* lifestyle diseases. Remember when everyone was convinced that uncers where a disease caused by stress among middle managers? The evidence needed to convince people is a lot more meager than the evidence needed to actually establish causation.

Gah!! Typos! (1)

HiThere (15173) | about 9 months ago | (#46053615)

call, not cal
Egypt, not egypt
ulcers, not uncers

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

mjwx (966435) | about 9 months ago | (#46054083)

Traffic accidents kill more people than natural disasters by orders of magnitude, and "lifestyle" diseases such as cancer and heart disease dwarf all else.

The problem is, admitting that traffic accidents are a major killer means that we have to admit the majority of people are terrible drivers. Then we'd have to look at why most people are terrible drivers...

Well lets just say this has already been done, and the the results weren't good. It required most people to change their driving habits dramatically and it was a lot easier for them to just accept the deaths and hope they weren't amongst them whilst making up a revenue conspiracy to make ignoring the data more palatable.

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 9 months ago | (#46052551)

Portland, Oregon.

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

used2win32 (531824) | about 9 months ago | (#46052637)

Yeah, cause Mt Hood, Mt Baker, Mt St. Helens or other area volanoes won't affect it. Neither will radiation leaks from the Hanford Nuclear Resveration upstream on the Columbia. No forest fires, or mudslides in the West hills, etc.

Still, it is a great place. Now its time to go to Voodoo Doughnuts...

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (5, Funny)

turkeydance (1266624) | about 9 months ago | (#46052755)

my home town. nothing happens here. ever.

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (2)

Zynder (2773551) | about 9 months ago | (#46053007)

Did you know that archaeologists found that exact same phrase (in Latin) carved on one the homes in Pompeii? :D

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

cervesaebraciator (2352888) | about 9 months ago | (#46053369)

Yep. It read:

HIC IN PATRIA MEA NIHIL UMQUAM FACTUM EST

Incidentally, one of the most disturbing bits of bathroom graffiti I've ever read was at a classics library. I was in the stall and looked up to see, scribbled on the tiles, the following:

Peccavi nimis cogitatione, verbo et opere.
Spiritus promptus est, caro autem infirma.

I really and truly didn't want to know what had been done on that toilet before I'd arrived.

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46056957)

"I have sinned exceedingly in thought, word and deed.
The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak."

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (2)

Brett Buck (811747) | about 9 months ago | (#46053949)

Up near Hudson Bay in Canada is a good candidate. That's where the Canadian Shield proto-continent is, mostly unaltered since Archaen times.

 

Re:Where's the "safest" place on Earth? (1)

dryeo (100693) | about 9 months ago | (#46054049)

Polar Bears

No kidding? (4, Insightful)

BenJeremy (181303) | about 9 months ago | (#46052191)

Seriously, who writes this stuff? I remember a minor earthquake we had in Michigan in the mid-80s. Why would they suddenly stop? Geological activity occurs over geological time scales, which is to say, thousands, even millions of years.

Re:No kidding? (0)

Sockatume (732728) | about 9 months ago | (#46054629)

Did you even read the summary, much less the article? There's a hypothesis that the current quakes are aftershocks from a major release of stress 200 years ago. The alternative is that the system is still actively releasing new stresses. Unless that "minor earthquake" you felt was in the 1780s, I don't think your experience of it has any bearing on the issue.

Y'hear that Midwest? (4, Funny)

Culture20 (968837) | about 9 months ago | (#46052221)

It's all y'all's fault.

Re:Y'hear that Midwest? (1)

bobbied (2522392) | about 9 months ago | (#46052445)

Those from MO would ask you to show them why...

Re:Y'hear that Midwest? (2)

c0lo (1497653) | about 9 months ago | (#46052917)

Midwestern faults named for a small town in the Missouri Bootheel

Need coffee. My first read resembled something lile: midwife's faults named for a small town in the Misere Brothel

Re:Y'hear that Midwest? (1)

rts008 (812749) | about 9 months ago | (#46055847)

Skip the coffee, your version is much more interesting!

I would be very interested in touring a brothel that was large enough to contain a town. :-)

Re:Y'hear that Midwest? (4, Insightful)

mjwx (966435) | about 9 months ago | (#46054089)

It's all y'all's fault.

Y'all == singular
All y'all == plural
Y'all's == y'all need to go back to grammar school.

Re:Y'hear that Midwest? (2)

Culture20 (968837) | about 9 months ago | (#46054729)

Colloquial plural possessive. Rephrased as "it is the fault of all y'all", but less funny since it seems less like I'm discussing a geological fault.

Re:Y'hear that Midwest? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46056259)

Y'all're nuts.

On the other hand (1)

jamesl (106902) | about 9 months ago | (#46052257)

From the article ... "But some scientists don't find the team's results convincing."

Re:On the other hand (3, Informative)

ackthpt (218170) | about 9 months ago | (#46052341)

From the article ... "But some scientists don't find the team's results convincing."

There were 4 earthquakes along the New Madrid Fault in the 1811-1812 timeframe which ere commented to have rung church bells in Washington DC, as well as modified the course of the Mississippi River. Harder bedrock (unlike all this nice, soft sandstone in the west coast) mean the shock is felt much stronger and further. I think I'd cut them some slack. An 8.0 along the fault would make Loma Prieta (1989) and Northridge (1994) look like picnics.

They should be considered sleeping or dormant, not inactive.

Re:On the other hand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46052669)

Think about what would happen if all the Mississippi River crossing bridges collapsed, not only stopping east-west crossings but bringing north-south shipping to a halt. Disaster. I think at that point, I'd want to be somewhere on the west side...

Re:On the other hand (1)

jafac (1449) | about 9 months ago | (#46052737)

Also when you compare building codes. I don't think that Chicago, for instance, is not particularly vulnerable. But a lot of older structures near St. Louis are going to be completely leveled, because they don't have building codes to withstand earthquakes like they do in California.

In an EQ near my home a few years ago, one major building collapsed. It was the one building in that town that had not yet been updated to new codes, and was unreinforced masonry. Killed two women, and they were the only fatalities.

Re:On the other hand (3, Informative)

jbengt (874751) | about 9 months ago | (#46053133)

The current building code in St Louis is written with earthquakes in mind, it's ust that there are a lot of older buildings that are still vulnerable.

Re:On the other hand (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 9 months ago | (#46055779)

An earthquake in the midwest or eastern part of the country will be felt more strongly at greater distance. Shockwaves will be far more potent. I do not believe California standards for construction would save much if another 8.0 struck along New Madrid.

Re: On the other hand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46056921)

DC? Try Boston!

Faults still active? (1)

Stumbles (602007) | about 9 months ago | (#46052297)

No doubt caused by global warming... I'm sure.

Re:Faults still active? (2)

bobbied (2522392) | about 9 months ago | (#46052459)

No it was the OZONE hole back in 1811... Get your history straight...

Re:Faults still active? (1)

dbIII (701233) | about 9 months ago | (#46052559)

Not in the way you mean. It's pretty warm down deep and we're floating on top of molten rock.
If you put your petty luddite comment aside and want to find out a bit about the world instead of making fun of those that do then Simon Winchester's "A Crack at the Edge of the World" is an entertaining and informative book about earthquakes in North America by a travel writer with training as a geologist. The book describes the New Madrid earthquake but most of it is about setting up context for the San Francisco earthquake in 1906.

Re:Faults still active? (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 9 months ago | (#46052561)

Any excuse to wave your dumb shittery around, eh?

Re:Faults still active? (1)

SpankiMonki (3493987) | about 9 months ago | (#46052847)

No doubt caused by global warming... I'm sure.

Everyone knows earthquakes are caused by evolutionism. Especially in the Midwest.

Re: Faults still active? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46052949)

No...they call it "Climate Change" now...that way they can't be wrong.

Anyway (2)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 9 months ago | (#46052325)

I'll never forget the Nova special on PBS about 10 years ago, "Welcome to Nashville, a city waiting to die."

Seems that area, not California, is the site of the most powerful earthquake in recorded history. And with building codes nothing like California.

Re:Anyway (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 9 months ago | (#46052339)

In the continental US, that is.

Re:Anyway (5, Informative)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 9 months ago | (#46053231)

I think the 1700 Cascadia earthquake [wikipedia.org] off the Oregon/Washington coast probably qualifies as the largest in recorded history in the continental US. It hit at about 9:00 pm, January 26, 1700 and was an estimated magnitude of 8.7-9.2. (The reason the time is known so accurately is that the tsunami it caused was recorded in Japanese records.)

Re:Anyway (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46057667)

the great wave of Kagoshima.

The Salish still have stories from when the earthquake hit.

Astounding! (3, Insightful)

Just Some Guy (3352) | about 9 months ago | (#46052555)

The Earth is approximately 4.5 billion years old, or about 1/22,500,000th older than it was when the last major earthquake hit in New Madrid.

For comparison, that's like being surprised that the US is roughly the same as it was 5.5 minutes ago.

Other fun Deep Time trivia: if the entire Earth's history were compressed into a 24 hour day, with the start being midnight yesterday and the current time being midnight tonight, then its surface was overrun with dinosaurs at 11:40PM. Modern Man came on the scene around 11:59:56PM.

Re:Astounding! (1)

neo-mkrey (948389) | about 9 months ago | (#46056699)

I watched Cosmos, too.

astounding? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46052759)

This is truly asinine.

"The occasional quakes rattling the New Madrid Seismic Zone, a series of midwestern faults named for a small town in the Missouri Bootheel, aren’t aftershocks of the massive quakes that rocked our fledgling nation more than 2 centuries ago, a new study suggests. The analysis reinvigorates a debate about the true level of seismic risk that those fault zones pose."

Two hundred years of data is enough to build a reliable prediction of future seismic activity?

No fucking duh that the Midwest is still active and dangerous.

This is absolutely silly.

Re:astounding? (2)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 9 months ago | (#46053345)

From geologic research there were events similar to the 1811/12 earthquakes around 1450, 900 and 300 and evidence for them as far back as 4800 B.C. That gives you some idea of the history. Based on that I'd say chances are it will be over 100 years before the next really big quake but you never know for sure.

Aftershock, really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46052963)

Aftershocks, 200 years later, are they sure what the term means?

I lived in both San Francisco and Illinois and... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46052971)

...to this day, the strongest earthquake I have felt was the 5.0 in 1987 in Illinois.

Re:I lived in both San Francisco and Illinois and. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46054259)

I'm guessing you either weren't in California for Loma Prieta in 1989 or were in one of the areas that barely felt it, then. :-p

Fresh rumblings of pussy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46053199)

We all know these brothels, why make a news article about it?

Yes, they rattle our junk, but we like it.

and in different news (1)

stenvar (2789879) | about 9 months ago | (#46053363)

Scientists determine that the sun will still rise tomorrow, the moon is still orbiting the earth, and water is still wet.

Err ... Fault Zone Are NOT Alive! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#46053665)

Hand down a patented fail on the posters inept ignorance and otherwise bad English!

Ha ha FU

The Earth is round (1)

jfdavis668 (1414919) | about 9 months ago | (#46055903)

People look at plate tectonics like it is happening on a flat plane. The edges between them are not straight. As they move, pressure builds up, and not just on the edges. It has to be released somewhere. The east and gulf coasts were made as the mountains inland eroded. The west coast are collections of bits of land tacked on the craton as it moved around over time. It is not one solid piece, and doesn't act as one.

My Only Question Is (1)

Phoenix666 (184391) | about 9 months ago | (#46056263)

Can said Midwestern earthquake swallow Chicago, and where is the best vantage point where I can sit with my popcorn and watch?

Re:My Only Question Is (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 9 months ago | (#46056889)

Can said Midwestern earthquake swallow Chicago, and where is the best vantage point where I can sit with my popcorn and watch?

Well, during the 1811/12 quake, the Mississippi ran backwards for several days, and eyewitness accounts from near the epicenter claim that you could actually see the seismic waves as they rolled across the landscape, so hey, maybe we'll get lucky!

From a Local (1)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about 9 months ago | (#46056929)

I grew up not far from New Madrid. While I lived in the area, there was no shortage of theories and speculation about when the fault was going to let "the Big One" go and kill us all. Hell, we got out of class for about a week when I was in middle school, because some famous geologist had said, "This date is when it's going to happen."

Of course, the big quake never happened. We went about our lives as if nothing had changed, because it hadn't. Now I live a few hundred miles from there, and I still chuckle when I hear these scientists speculate that the fault is going to figuratively explode, "sometime within the next 50 years." Hell, they've been telling us that for... well, over 50 years. Not too worried.

That said... you wanna see something freaky? Go for a drive down MO-67 towards New Madrid. You know how, when they blast through hillsides to build highways in most places, you can see that the exposed strata is almost perfectly horizontal? Around New Madrid, it's at more like a 45 degree angle.

There's just something eerie about that... and I love it!

GO MO!

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