California Swarm Sees 28 Earthquakes In 24 Hours

The US cities of Los Angeles, San Francisco and Sacramento have all been rattled by large earthquakes 1.5 magnitude or greater in the past day.

The largest quake measured 2.6 magnitude and struck 4.30am local time at a depth of 23km near Tuolumne City, around 213km from San Francisco.

Eleven of the tremors were over 2.0 magnitude, while the rest were between 1.0 to 2.0 magnitude, according to Earthquake Track.

Although relatively small, the wave of earthquakes will entrench fears that a massive tremor measuring 7.0 or above could strike the region.

Scientists believe the US state is overdue a “big one” magnitude 7 or over earthquake by around 50 years.

california earthquake swarm

Last week a magnitude 3.6 earthquake rattled northwest Los Angeles after striking in the Santa Monica mountains.

It struck in the same week a colossal 7.1 magnitude virtually flattened Mexico City, causing widespread damage and killing more than 300.

Over the weekend Mexico was shaken by more quakes, including a 6.2 tremor that caused people to flee their homes.

Since then experts have issued warnings that a powerful earthquake akin to the one that hit Mexico is “inevitable”.

california earthquake swarm

“The system that is causing these quakes in Mexico is by and large similar to what’s happening in California.”

Matthew Blackett, of Coventry University

Natural disaster expert Matthew Blackett, of Coventry University, said the system causing the Mexico earthquakes is similar to the one in California.

“It’s a different system,” he said. “But the system that is causing these quakes in Mexico is by and large similar to what’s happening in California.”

Colliding tectonic plates are causing the earthquakes on both continents, which sit in a tremor disaster zone known as the Ring of Fire.

california earthquake swarm GETTY

DEVASTATION: Parts of California were reduced to ruin when a large quake hit in 1994

An 800-mile fissure that runs almost the length of California is thought to be the cause for most concern.

Over the past 150 years, pressure has been building up along the San Andreas fault that experts believe could unleash the next “big one”.

Robert Graves, researcher for the US Geological Survey, said: “In some cases, the time separation between quakes is as short as 60 years, and in others it is around 300 years.

“This variability is one reason that makes forecasting when the next quake will occur quite difficult.”

But “it will happen sometime”, he added.

Original Article:

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