Big Quake Will Rock Calif. by 2038: Study

Scientists warn state to plan for 7.5 mag temblor
By Zach Samalin,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 14, 2008 9:00 PM CDT
Big Quake Will Rock Calif. by 2038: Study
Seismologists say California runs a 46% risk of being hit by a 7.5 or greater earthquake within 30 years, calling Southern California the most probable location. Much of the state remains unprepared.   ((c) bobster1985)

A major earthquake is almost inevitable in California in the next 30 years, a new study says. The likely target is Southern California, which has a 97% chance of a 6.7 magnitude quake and 37% chance of a 7.5. Because it has suffered more big quakes in the last century, Northern California has a slightly lower chance of a 6.7 temblor and only 15% chance of a 7.5.

The study utilizes new seismic techniques and "is the most comprehensive earthquake forecast ever developed of the entire state of California," one researcher said. Experts are using it to push for better state earthquake safety laws. "We're generally frustrated by the pace in which scientific results are incorporated into policy," a UCLA seismologist told the Los Angeles Times. (More earthquake stories.)

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