A Swarm Of Earthquakes Beneath The San Andreas Fault Is Making Scientists Nervous

Warner Bros Pictures might want to rethink the shooting of San Andreas II – the sequel to the 2015 blockbuster about a massive earthquake striking the San Francisco Bay Area that starred the Rock, Paul Giamatti and a host of other A-list actors.

Because if the US Geological Survey’s worst fears are confirmed, the seismic devastation depicted in the film might hit a little too close to home. According to the Daily Mail, 134 earthquakes have hammered a three-mile stretch around Monterey County on the San Andreas fault over the last week – a pace that’s making seismologists nervous.

The San Andreas fault stretches 750 miles north to south across coastal California, forming the boundary of the Pacific plate and North American plate.

Of those earthquakes, 17 were stronger than 2.5 magnitude and 6 of them were stronger than 3.0. And experts at the USGS warn that more tremors are expected in the coming weeks.

The rumblings are amplifying fears raised last week that the 'Big One' – the mythical quake depicted in the movie ‘San Andreas’ – could be about to hit. In another sign of impending disaster, ten 'mini quakes' struck the same area last week. That swarm included one 4.6-magnitude quake that was felt in San Francisco more than 90 miles away.

“This one has been a quite productive aftershock sequence,” said Ole Kaven, a US Geological Survey seismologist.

“We suspect there will be aftershocks in the 2 to 3 [magnitude] range for at least a few more weeks,” he said.

Fortunately, nobody was injured in the quake storm.   

Last week's swarm hit California's Monterey County on Monday at 11:31 am ET about 13 miles northeast of Gonzales, near Salinas.

It dramatically increases the likelihood of a major quake in California, at least temporarily, experts claimed.

The initial 4.6-magnitude quake was followed by nine smaller aftershocks.

The largest of the tremors measured magnitude 2.8, according to Annemarie Baltay, a seismologist with the US Geological Survey in Menlo Park.

The quake happened at a depth of around 4 miles directly on top of the fault, close to a region where the Calaveras Fault branches off.

Experts have previously warned that any activity on the fault line is cause for concern.

“Any time there is significant seismic activity in the vicinity of the San Andreas fault, we seismologists get nervous,” Thomas Jordan, director of the Southern California Earthquake Centre, said, according to the Mail.


BuddyEffed weburke Wed, 11/22/2017 - 18:02 Permalink

"17 were stronger than 2.5 magnitude and 6 of them were stronger than 3.0"

Dozens of 4.5 and greater with very many over 5 and even a 7 near Tadine New Caledonia but offshore from there, shallow with 6.2 miles down the depth on so many. Very unusual

These swarms in the 3s and 4s don't compare in energy to the 5s down under.

Even the Yellowstone clusters in recent years were mostly 3s and 4s and lower.

In reply to by weburke

401K of Dooom Luc X. Ifer Wed, 11/22/2017 - 21:08 Permalink

"Nah. Wait for the 0hedge bomb news - 'Bill is shocked after Hillary reveals out-of-the-wedlock bat-child with Dracula!'.http://believeinbristol.org/uploads/images/2011040809544860647.jpg" Ah ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha - laughter goes on for a half an hour - Ha ha ha ha ha ha, uuuhhhh.   Thank you for that oldie but goodie!  Yes I am indicating my age but that was just great!  Thank you for that laugh.

In reply to by Luc X. Ifer

J S Bach 401K of Dooom Wed, 11/22/2017 - 22:33 Permalink

What exactly does a "seismologist" do?  I mean, they can read their instruments telling that a 2.3 or 5.4 or 6.7 tremor has occurred, but they can't come anywhere near predicting when or where these events will happen.  So, what does one of these eggheads do to earn his 6-figure salary?  It blows me away at how many useless "experts" and "professors" there are draining resources in the name of every sort of unpredictable topic.

In reply to by 401K of Dooom

DeadFred TruxtonSpangler Wed, 11/22/2017 - 17:53 Permalink

I'm over a mile away from the Calavaras fault so why should I care? This has been an interesting swarm. If you check these swarms out on Google Earth you usually find they are happening in old volcanic locations, intrusions of magma causing small quakes. This swarm is happening at the intersection of two major faults and an old volcanic location, the Quien Sabe volcanic field. The field is a few million years old and the San Andreas has split the old volcanoes north and southward. What will happen? Who knows. (pun intended)

In reply to by TruxtonSpangler

Bigern espirit Wed, 11/22/2017 - 20:08 Permalink

Until more people realize the events on one side of a plate boundary are intrinsically linked to similar events on the opposite side, tectonic activity and volcanism will remain a mystery to many. Fiji is linked to Peru, and everthing along the way.Indonesia is linked to Alaska, and everything along the way.Both pathways collide in North America. -Hats off to Terral03

In reply to by espirit

Wide-Eyed and … RafterManFMJ Wed, 11/22/2017 - 21:51 Permalink

Western Pa., the garden spot of America.  No earthquakes, blizzards, mudslides, forest fires, hurricanes or droughts.  Maybe every twenty or thirty years or so a tornado passes by, but most are of no consequence.  And, best of all, we are of little or no interest to the politicians of the state, so they ignore us, too.  Our primary aggravations here are lousy roads, failing infrastructure and unemployment, but where aren't those things a problem?  Yep, best place to live in the country, but we try not to advertise.  

In reply to by RafterManFMJ

Farmerz Wide-Eyed and … Wed, 11/22/2017 - 23:40 Permalink

Still watching out for those pesky state police hiding in unmarked cars everywhere shooting radar? I remember that way back in the early 70s when I lived there. Picked a bell pepper and a few hot peppers yesterday from the garden, oranges are almost ripe, what about yours?My weather  http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?lon=-121.51720651855467&lat=39… weather http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?lon=-79.82338107910157&lat=40…

In reply to by Wide-Eyed and …

Billy the Poet Farmerz Thu, 11/23/2017 - 00:08 Permalink

Picked my last outdoor peppers about three weeks ago. Brought in some tabasco plants and have them in the kitchen. Still have a bunch of fresh hot and sweet peppers in the fridge and green tomatoes ripening in the window.Still have some cabbage in the ground and will harvest/transplant potato onions this week. Leaf lettuce, endive and arugula still growing despite an unusual low in the teens this month.. Parsnips, carrots and celery will thrive in a raised bed under glass all winter.

In reply to by Farmerz