Fault lines

By ICLR | Earthquake-related news from the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction (ICLR).

What If a 9.0-Magnitude Earthquake Hit Seattle?

In preparation for the BIG ONE — the mighty 9.0-magnitude earthquake that's expected to lay waste to the Pacific Northwest — geophysicists have …


Researchers create largest, longest multiphysics earthquake simulation to date

Just before 8:00 a.m. local time on December 26, 2004, people in southeast Asia were starting their days when the third strongest recorded earthquake …


Disaster Geology: 2017's Most Deadly Earthquake

2017's deadliest earthquake (so far) struck Iran at 9:18pm local time on November 12th. As of this writing, 530 people have died in Iran, with a …


Earthquakes caused by industrial activities—what are the risks and how can they be reduced?

On September 3, 2016, a magnitude 5.8 earthquake struck just northwest of Pawnee, Oklahoma, causing moderate to severe damages in buildings near the …


Sloshing of Earth’s core may spike major earthquakes

Duo forecasts increase in quakes over next 5 years


Japanese earthquake zone strongly influenced by the effects of friction

The islands of the Japanese archipelago are affected both by frequent, low-magnitude earthquakes and tremors and by larger, highly destructive …


Earthquake risk elevated with detection of spontaneous tectonic tremor in Anza Gap

Scientists at the University of California, Riverside have detected spontaneous tectonic tremor—a signature of slow earthquakes deep below the …


Researchers Can Spot Earthquakes Using Fiber Optic Cables

Scientists can use the same cables that bring the internet into your home to expand our earthquake detection networks.<p>Earthquakes are some of our planet's most devastating natural disasters. With almost no warning, an earthquake can level entire cities in a matter of minutes. For the millions of …


50 Ways an Earthquake Could Shatter—or Spare—These Major Northwest Cities

Simulations of the Cascadia Subduction Zone off the Pacific Northwest coast yielded surprises for geologists studying the region’s quake risk.<p>One of the world’s most dangerous earthquake faults lies just 50 miles off the coast of the Pacific Northwest. To find out what might happen when the next …


UK engineers develop device for earthquake-proofing buildings

<b>UK developed structural engineering technology could protect buildings from the impact of earthquakes or blasts, preventing collapse and reducing the</b> …


How will 'Really Big One' earthquake shake out? Researchers run 50 simulations

Such an earthquake along the Cascadia Subduction Zone, which runs from northern California to British Columbia, would cause widespread destruction.A …


A Rosetta Stone for Earthquakes

Istanbul, a city of 14 million people and a crossroads of cultural exchange dating back millennia, may also be where Turkey’s next major earthquake …


Outdated Construction Methods Caused Most Building Collapses in Mexico Earthquake, Engineers Say

MEXICO CITY — Warm lighting would enhance the wood floors' natural glow, the developer promised, so when all the custom light bulbs burnt out, Anahi Abadia and her husband grudgingly drove to Home Depot to replenish supplies for their chic new flat in central Mexico City.<p>They had just reached the …

Mexico City

In Mexico City, Pressure to Prepare for the Next Big Earthquake

MEXICO CITY — The buildings shuddered and rocked in the strongest earthquake in this city’s modern history, and yet they remained upright. Then, exactly 32 years later, they crumpled in seconds, killing 228 people.<p>A popular myth had evolved about those buildings that withstood the devastation three …


Do Earthquakes Have a ‘Tell’?

Data scientists and seismologists could potentially forecast strong earthquakes through algorithms designed to detect and monitor “deep tremor.”


Risk of Human-Triggered Earthquakes Laid Out in Biggest-Ever Database

Geologists track hundreds of quakes caused by people and the projects that set them off


Mexico earthquakes demonstrate how height and distance dictate damage

Waves that ripple across the ground are especially destructive to tall buildings whereas intense shaking is more likely to destroy low-rise buildings<p>Two big earthquakes in Mexico last month were a tragic reminder that the country sits atop one of the most seismically active places on Earth. In …


Engineering and the Mexico City Earthquake

It’s been a bad month for Mexico, having endured three earthquakes in September alone. The worst of these quakes struck the densely populated capital …


'Statistically, it's coming.' California prepares for the next big earthquake

<b>(CNN) —</b> The scene is terrifying -- entire sections of a Mexico City office building fall away and crash to the ground. The screams of people reacting are almost worse.<p>That moment, captured on cellphone video, shows just one of a number of buildings, from apartments to schools to governmental …


How We Can Stop Earthquakes From Killing People Before They Even Hit

Ahmad Wani isn’t your typical Silicon Valley entrepreneur. Instead of inventing his company in a college dorm room or a Palo Alto garage, he …

Palo Alto

In earthquakes, just a few seconds of warning could save lives

It began sending test notifications to selected users in California in January 2012. But hundreds of sensors still need to be installed -- something Gov. Jerry Brown and the California state legislature partially funded in 2016 -- and still, once that happens, the system would not be capable of …


Mexico Has Some Earthquake Lessons for the United States

People cannot prevent earthquakes, but they can take steps to minimize the deaths and damage. Many more might have died in Mexico City this week had the country not invested in an early warning system that rang alarms just before the catastrophic earthquake struck. The United States, which has been …


NASA's Earthquake 'Damage Map' Shows Destruction in Mexico

A new satellite-imagery map could help Mexico respond more effectively to Tuesday's (Sept. 19) powerful Raboso earthquake, which killed hundreds of …

The Strange Tectonic Coincidence of Mexico’s September Earthquakes

In 1325, the Aztecs, until then a nomadic people, chose the site of their capital, Tenochtitlan, based on a prophecy that the location would be marked by an eagle eating a snake while perched on a cactus. That the cactus in question happened to sit on an island in a mucky lake did not, apparently, …


Check Your L.A. Home's Likelihood of Collapsing During an Earthquake With This Tool

The recent earthquakes in Mexico, including a 7.1 that just decimated Mexico City, are raising eyebrows in Southern California, where a “big one” has …

Mexico City Was Built on an Ancient Lake Bed. That Makes Earthquakes Much Worse.

The devastating earthquake on Tuesday was all the more destructive because of Mexico City’s unusual position atop an ancient lake bed.

Mexico City

California could be hit by an 8.2 mega-earthquake, and it would be catastrophic

The magnitude 8.2 earthquake that ravaged southern Mexico on Sept. 7 was the largest to shake the country in nearly a century.<p>Like California, Mexico is a seismically active region that has seen smaller quakes that have caused death and destruction. But the Sept. 7 temblor is a reminder that even …


15,000 buildings need earthquake retrofitting in Los Angeles

After a massive earthquake struck central Mexico, horrifying images of collapsed buildings emerged and had many Los Angeles residents wondering if …

Why some buildings crumbled and others survived the Mexico City quake: A sober lesson for California

The amateur videos emerging from the magnitude 7.1 earthquake that devastated Mexico City on Tuesday are grim. Some show taller buildings swaying. Others show short, squat structures suddenly collapsing. Remains of brick walls have fallen onto sidewalks in heaps of rubble.<p>Over decades, …