The largest earthquake I’ve ever been in was just north of Oakland, California. It was a 5.0 magnitude, and the only trouble I had with it was that I woke up bouncing on the bed a bit. Never gave it a second thought really until I learned about it in the news on the next day.
Seems that about the only time earthquakes happen these days is when you read about them in the news. The January 1st 2024 earthquake in Japan sort of got the ball rolling on this whole all-of-a-sudden earthquake reporting.
In the headlines it was reported that on January 1, 2024 at 4:10 p.m. local time a magnitude 7.5 earthquake struck in the Noto Peninsula of Ishikawa prefecture, Japan according to the USGS.
We then went on to discover that on January 1, 2024, at 8:27 a.m. local time a magnitude 4.1 earthquake struck off the California coast (Los Angeles County) producing weak shaking throughout Southern California.
And then it seemed that New York got in on the action when it was reported that on January 2, 2024, at 5:45 a.m. local time a magnitude 1.7 earthquake struck Queens, New York centered in the neighborhood of Astoria, according to the USGS.
Earthquakes happen every day, all around the world. Usually only the most severe earthquakes, like the most recent one in Japan ever really gets attention, and for good reason — People are displaced, injured, and killed during these big shakes and it’s important that everyone knows about it as quickly as possible so aid can be sent to the affected areas in a timely fashion.
If you are curious about just how many earthquakes roll across our planet every day, all you have to do is visit the EarthScope Consortium’s interactive earthquake browser. It’s is a place where you can take a look at what’s going in your area.
You can show the tectonic plate boudaries, animate an earthquake, discover the magnitude, find out the time of the earthquake, and you can even get a 3D view of the earthquake.
EarthScope Consortium operates the National Science Foundation’s Geodetic Facility for the Advancement of Geoscience (GAGE) and Seismological Facility for the Advancement of Geoscience (SAGE).
Iris is located here: http://ds.iris.edu/seismon/index.phtml
It’s really sort of cool to look around and see just how active everything is on our planet.