Californians have an unspoken deal with Mother Nature: Provide us with some of the most comfortable weather in the world, and we’ll let you shake us down every now and again.
For years, citizens of the Golden State have been living on the edge. Their precarious roosts sit nearly on top of major fault lines, such as the infamous San Andreas Fault, and the state is prone to earthquakes. Luckily for all involved, a vast majority of these tremors aren’t dangerous, except for any precariously placed objects around your home.
But every now and then, a more serious quake will rattle the windows out west, such as the 6.4 magnitude event yesterday. This was the most powerful quake in Southern California for about two decades, but authorities are warning that this may not be over yet.
Geologists say yesterday’s 6.4-magnitude quake is likely to produce a forceful 5.5-strength aftershock and a series of smaller tremors – and could even prompt a larger one.
In addition, officials admitted that a new Los Angeles earthquake warning app had not sent out a public alert despite the most powerful Southern California quake since 1999.
The ShakeAlert system detected the quake but did not trigger a public warning because the magnitude was less than 5.0 in Los Angeles, city bosses said.
The Independence Day incident produced few injuries, thankfully, and minimal damage to the state’s infrastructure.
Still, there are concerns about what comes next:
Speaking to SFGate, U.S. Geological Survey expert Susan Hough said: ‘For a 6.5 quake you’d expect a lot of aftershocks. You’d expect the biggest to be 5.5 and so far the biggest has been 4.7.
‘With any earthquake, there is a 5 percent chance something even bigger will happen within the next three days. If it did, it would be in the same remote area.’
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