Base Camp Connect Blog

Earthquake Magnitude vs. Intensity: Communicating Risk and Consequence

Posted by Robert C. Chandler, Ph.D. on January 10, 2017

According to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) neither the USGS nor any other scientists have ever successfully predicted a major earthquake. Given the lack of a demonstrably reliable prediction capability, the USGS therefore focuses their efforts on the long-term mitigation of earthquake hazards (i.e. by helping to improve the safety of structures or promoting preparedness), rather than by trying to accomplish short-term predictive warnings. However, based on scientific data, probabilities can be calculated for potential future earthquakes. For example, scientists estimate that over the next 30 years the probability of a magnitude 7 earthquake occurring in Northern California is 76% and 75% in Southern California.

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Topics: emergency management, natural disaster, risks

Earthquake Disaster: Preparing for Old Risks in New Places

Posted by Robert C. Chandler, Ph.D. on December 13, 2016

A report published last year(1) includes recent analysis that dramatically expands the North American earthquake threat risk projections to now include almost half of the entire USA population and has also increased the severity projections for previously acknowledged regions. In many cases, those in these newly upgraded risk zones remain unaware and unprepared for earthquakes.

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Topics: risk of quake, Earthquake disaster, risks

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