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Salton Sea - New Quake Research


Last updated 2/9/2016 at 11:21am

The San Andreas, which runs from the Salton Sea to Northern California, is expected to generate a major earthquake in the next 30 years. Nearby faults could potentially make that happen.

According to an article released by the Press Enterprise, Earth sciences professor Gareth Funning and a team of scientists, studying a pair of earthquakes that took place in 1996 in Pakistan, found that what was once thought to be a single quake was actually two earthquakes on neighboring faults. Although the two faults are 30 miles apart, both are thrust faults and 10 times farther apart than any faults that had previously been observed influencing each other. .

“There is the Cucamonga Fault that runs on the south edge of the San Gabriels up through the Cajon Pass,” he said. “It’s certainly close” to both the San Andreas and San Jacinto faults, which also slice through the pass.

Thrust fault activity is harder to predict, Funning said, because the evidence of such activity is pushed above ground and tends to erode away.

“There are plenty of places in the Southland where this could occur,” he said. “There are lots of thrust faults that haven’t had quakes in recent times. But it’s difficult to say with any confidence which ones could do this.”

Robert Graves, a research geophysicist with the U.S. Geological Survey in Pasadena, said Funning’s research adds to an area that is being looked at by seismologists.

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