Breaking Seismic News: Ohio, USA
March 15, 2007
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Monday's 3.6 earthquake in Portage County was the latest in Northeast Ohio. The epicenter was along the Akron Magnetic Lineament, the broad fault zone on which a 5.0-magnitude earthquake in southern Lake County occurred in 1986. That earthquake shattered glass and prompted the federal government to raise Ohio's earthquake risk from low to moderate. Earthquakes in this region, though mostly minor, are becoming more common. "This could be a fore-shock to a bigger one, but that's pretty unlikely." Fourteen earthquakes shook Northeast Ohio last year. The most severe was in June near Painesville and had a magnitude of 3.8. Many of the earthquakes occurred beneath Lake Erie, where there may be unconfirmed fault lines. "California's rocks are much younger. They're hotter rocks, and they're more structurally complex. They're twisted and folded around a lot. An earthquake in California occurs, and it causes damage in a certain area. But if we have that same size earthquake here in the East, it does damage in about a 10-times greater area because our rocks are flat-lying rocks. They're old, cold, brittle, and energy goes [through them] for a long distance."
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