8.6 earthquake possible in Southern California? Caltech study suggests new ‘mega-earthquake’ risk

July 26, 2012 LOS ANGELES - In recent years, scientists, first responders and utilities have been preparing for “The Big One,” that inevitable quake that will rock Southern California to its core. It’s coming. For sure. They just don’t know when. But the U.S. Geological Survey and Caltech have been on the ball, working from a likely scenario, a simulated “Shakeout” that would have a 7.8 quake hitting greater L.A. It would be deadly, destructive and put us in the dark for days, if not weeks. Unfortunately, a 7.8 might now be too low of an estimate for The Big One: Caltech researchers looked at Sumatra’s (April 11) 8.6 earthquake and concluded — maybe — that a similar temblor could happen along the same San Andreas fault that will produce our Big One. Make that a possible Bigger One. Scientists said the Indonesian rocker was larger than they ever thought such a quake “could be,” according to Caltech. It was a ‘intraplate strike-slip quake,” similar to what would happen at San Andreas, where much of California, from Baja to San Francisco, is moving north as the rest of America moves south. In Sumatra, scientists found that this was not only the biggest strike-slip fault temblor ever, but that it set of a series of right-angle ruptures that amplified the shaking, like a block of ice cracking up in the heat. And yes, it could happen here. The research, published last week in the journal Science Express, argues: The new details provide fresh insights into the possibility of ruptures involving multiple faults occurring elsewhere–something that could be important for earthquake-hazard assessment along California’s San Andreas fault, which itself is made up of many different segments and is intersected by a number of other faults at right angles. Lingsen Meng, lead author of the Caltech research: If other earthquake ruptures are able to go this deep or to connect as many fault segments as this earthquake did, they might also be very large and cause significant damage. The USGS, of course, is begging Southern Californians to prepare for our “mega-earthquake,” as academics called the Indonesian shaker. You know, flashlights, batteries, radios, water, nonperishable food. All that good stuff. –LA Weekly
contribution Rhonda

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20 Responses to 8.6 earthquake possible in Southern California? Caltech study suggests new ‘mega-earthquake’ risk

  1. Marshallrn says:

    Well I’m in the north and I have been getting prepared for a year and a half now, not there yet but I’m closer. People should start yesterday.

  2. MAD says:

    I think the strong are just going to take all your things away, like food and water, I am ready as I think God would have me,

    • John says:

      Most preppers are ready to defend their families and supplies, just like Abraham defended his tribe from raiding parties. You do believe the Old Testament don’t you?

  3. I’m in Eastern Ontario, Canada, but I have been sensing something big is going to be happening along the West Coast. Keeping everyone in my prayers

  4. When I was looking at the map and graphics for the Sumatra quake I thought something looked familiar about those faults, but I’ve been so focused on the Cascadia Subduction Zone (“My Fault” as I half-jokingly refer to it) that I missed the resemblance to the San Andreas. Good catch Cal-Tech! Maybe that’s why the big Frisco quake 100+ yeasr ago was so strong…

  5. atterro says:

    This is California, we are going into the sea.

    This is California, we are going into the sea.

    I’m afraid that the visions of Joe Brandt from 1937 might actually be true. I believe in Deja-vu, considering i’ve experienced some of my own, minor.

  6. Gail Bracey says:

    I read the Joe Brandt dream too. Some of it did not seem to fit today’s time period, especially the President’s picture in the newspaper. However, I don’t know that visions/dreams have to be exact replicas of the real event. “This is California, we are going into the sea” made an impression on me as it seems to have on others. There have been several prophecies about a devastating California quake. May God have mercy on us all.

  7. prayntongues says:

    There was no mention of a tsunami if a mega-quake does occur in So Cal, is this not a possibility? If so, those who are prepared (food, water, flashlights, batteries, etc) will not be prepared to “run to higher ground” because of freeways that are already congested and they will be damaged. Those trying to flee will be in gridlock, sitting ducks in their cars going no where. No California dreamin’ here, only the worst possible nightmare.

    • John says:

      There are ultimate preppers who will get out of California. Ultimate preppers not only have the traditional food, water, medicine supplies, but they are also trained in wilderness survival. Ultimate preppers will use motorcycles, mountain bikes, or just hike out of the San Bernadino Mountains and be eating wild edible plants as they go.

      • Kind of like the “Posiedon Adventure” when some followed the preacher (who knew what to do) and others didn’t. I would follow the PREPPERS! Learn from them and perhaps get a shot (not literally) of makng it with my family.

  8. Desmond says:

    On the subject of Joe Brandt’s dream, does anyone have a copy of the original written dream.

  9. Arc Eopteryx says:

    It is an unconfirmed rumor at this point, but Obama is going to to issue an Executive Order to change the name of the “San Andreas Fault” to Bush’s Fault.

  10. Mike Smith says:

    I live in Seattle. Over here in the Pacific Northwest, we’re expecting a large quake to hit us also. God help us all on the west coast. When the shaking begins, it will be horriffic with a loss of life in the millions. There will be no warning. The west coast quake will hit when the masses least expect it. God help us all!!!

  11. Emanni says:

    The video simulation from this report.

    ShakeOut Earthquake Scenario Shaking Simulation

    • John says:

      Many of these coastal cities have built their infrastructures on “shifting sand”. Take Coronado Island in San Diego for example, This city, and the naval base is sitting on nothing but sand, no bed rock. The soil in all of these coastal regions will liquefy during a huge 8.0 earthquake and everything will come tumbling down. And of course, the gas lines will break and this will result in a fire like it did with the San Francisco fire and earthquake. The only way you will survive that scenario is to be drifting above all of it on a hot air balloon, or flying away on a plane. I think Coronado would just sink into the ocean along with parts of National City, Imperial Beach, and maybe Chula Vista. Tiajuana would also be inundated. At least that would take care of the illegals crossing the border by the thousands everyday.

      • pagan66 says:

        “At least that would take care of the illegals crossing the border by the thousands everyday.”

        Wow. John, I think by the time such a catastrophe happens, “illegals” crossing a southern border will be the least of America’s problems. Where do you think all the refugees from San Diego, Coronado & other places you mentioned go? Won’t they too become refugees trying to cross borders to get to safety? Soon Mankind as a species will all become illegals.

        Peace & Illumination to you

  12. Duchess Smith says:

    The southern portion of the San Andreas in locked.

  13. Mike says:

    I think the big one is coming tonight

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