For decades Californians have been warned repeatedly that the “big one” is coming. Someday a massive earthquake is going rip through the San Andreas Fault, possibly causing thousands of casualties and billions of dollars in damage. So far nothing that serious has occurred in recent memory. With the exception of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, the state has been largely spared from any serious tectonic disaster.
But according to some experts we may not have to wait much longer, especially in regards to the southern portion of the San Andreas fault near San Diego and Los Angeles. That’s because it’s been so long since this fault has had an earthquake. The pressure is building there. The fault typically has a major earthquake every 100 years or so, but this particular portion hasn’t experienced a major quake since 1857, which was a magnitude 7.9.
According to Thomas Jordan, director of the Southern California Earthquake Center: “The springs on the San Andreas system have been wound very, very tight. And the southern San Andreas fault, in particular, looks like it’s locked, loaded and ready to go.”
If it’s anything like the earthquake of 1857 (and it could easily be worse), the effects will be felt all over California. The last time it happened, soil was liquefied as far north as Stockton, well over 300 miles away. It’s estimated that a quake of this magnitude would kill 1,800 people and do $200 billion in damages, despite modern building standards. In terms of damages and casualties, that would put it in the same category as Hurricane Katrina.
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Contributed by Joshua Krause of The Daily Sheeple.
Joshua Krause is a reporter, writer and researcher at The Daily Sheeple. He was born and raised in the Bay Area and is a freelance writer and author. You can follow Joshua’s reports at Facebook or on his personal Twitter. Joshua’s website is Strange Danger .