How likely is a New Madrid earthquake?

How likely is a New Madrid earthquake?

If we use the data on historical seismicity combined with the new information on recurrence of large earthquakes, and make the same assumptions that go into the National Seismic Hazard maps, we would estimate a 25-40% chance of a magnitude 6.0 and greater earthquake in the next 50 years and about a 7-10% probability of …

Is the New Madrid Fault due for an earthquake?

While New Madrid has been relatively dormant for hundreds of years, it is still possible it could produce a major earthquake. “One school of thought is geologists that say it’s a dead fault, it’s not moving, it’s not creeping,” Dumond said. “But seismic activity has been recorded since 1972.”

What areas would be affected by New Madrid earthquake?

Earthquakes that occur in the New Madrid Seismic Zone potentially threaten parts of eight American states: Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, Arkansas, Kentucky, Tennessee, Oklahoma, and Mississippi.

Is the New Madrid Seismic Zone A failed rift?

A Failed Rift Rifts (or faults) emerged between — and within — the various continental plates. Some 600 million years ago, a point of division called the Reelfoot Rift appeared in what’s now the southeastern United States. The New Madrid Seismic Zone lies within the Reelfoot Rift.

Is New Madrid Fault active?

The zone is active, averaging more than 200 measured seismic events per year. The New Madrid Fault extends approximately 120 miles southward from the area of Charleston, Missouri, and Cairo, Illinois, through Mew Madrid and Caruthersville, following Interstate 55 to Blytheville, then to Marked Tree Arkansas.

What caused the New Madrid earthquake 1811?

The main shock that occurred at 2:15 am on December 16, 1811, was a result of slippage along the Cottonwood Grove Fault in northeastern Arkansas. It was followed by at least three large aftershocks with magnitudes that ranged from 6.0 to 7.0 over the course of the next 48 hours.

Is the New Madrid Fault line still active today?

What is unusual about the New Madrid Seismic Zone?

Unlike the West Coast where major quake activity is more predictable based on measured movement at tectonic plate boundaries, New Madrid is located near the center of the North American Plate. Shake and damage areas are up to 20 times larger than similar West Coast quakes. Earthquakes cannot be predicted.

What caused Reelfoot Lake?

It was formed by the earthquakes that occurred along the New Madrid Fault in the winter of 1811–12. In the upheaval, land on the east side of the Mississippi River sank, creating a depression that river water rushed in to fill.

When was the Great New Madrid Earthquake?

The 1811–1812 New Madrid earthquakes (/ˈmædrɪd/) were a series of intense intraplate earthquakes beginning with an initial earthquake of moment magnitude 7.2–8.2 on December 16, 1811, followed by a moment magnitude 7.4 aftershock on the same day.

What was the magnitude of the New Madrid earthquake?

The historic 1811-1812 earthquakes of New Madrid, Missouri The New Madrid fault system was responsible for the 1811–12 New Madrid earthquakes, an intense intraplate earthquake series that began with an initial earthquake of moment magnitude 7.5–7.9 on December 16, 1811, and was followed by a moment magnitude 7.4 aftershock on the same day.

How much damage would a New Madrid earthquake do in Tennessee?

The scenario earthquake would cause at least moderate or severe damage to over 265,000 buildings in Tennessee alone, including nearly 50,000 unreinforced masonry structures. In the aftermath of this event, there will be limited medical, firefighting, and law enforcement services in the most impacted states in the NMSZ.

How often does the New Madrid Fault occur?

The region averages one small earthquake per year but lots of small ones that can’t be detected by people. The danger with New Madrid’s fault is that it impacts regions with way more distance than earthquakes on the west coast does. Here’s a comparison damage map.

Is the New Madrid Fault Line in Tennessee?

It also extends into parts of Tennessee. And there is worse news yet, the fault line offers up extremely shallow earthquakes. An earthquake prompted by the New Madrid Seismic Fault Line occurs at 3 and 15 miles depth.