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Disasters & Extreme WeatherScience

High Risk of Tsunami in Los Angeles and Istanbul

A team of geologists who studied the Haiti earthquake that struck on the 12th of January and caused a series of destructive tsunamis suggest that the risk of similar events taking place in places such as Kingston (Jamaica), Istanbul (Turkey) and Los Angeles is much higher than currently thought.

These cities lie near the coast and near an active geological feature called a strike-slip fault, and until now geologists did not consider the tsunami risk that high in these places.

“The scary part about that is you do not need a large earthquake to trigger a large tsunami,” said Matt Hornbach, research associate at The University of Texas at Austin’s Institute for Geophysics and lead author on the paper published in the latest online edition of the journal Nature Geoscience.

“Organizations that issue tsunami warnings usually look for large earthquakes on thrust faults,” said Hornbach. “Now we see you don’t necessarily need those things. A moderate earthquake on a strike-slip fault can still be cause for alarm.”

More Dangerous Than Expected

A strike-slip fault is a point where two tectonic plates slip past each other like two hands brushing past one another. When points like this rupture, they usually do not vertically displace the seafloor much, which is how the majority of tsunamis are generated.

However, this latest research suggests that even a moderate earthquake on a strike-slip fault can generate tsunamis.

“The geology of Kingston, Jamaica is nearly identical to Port Au Prince, Haiti,” said Hornbach. “It’s primed and ready to go and they need to prepare for it. The good news is, they have a leg up because they’re aware of the problem.”

Source: The University of Texas at Austin

Image Source: United Nations Development Programme




One comment
  1. Istanbul

    Can Donald Trump build a hotel or a condo in the middle of central park?
    Would you let that happen?
    From rainforests to urban forests.. When are you going to realize that it is not a solution when you destroy the natural life and native lands of a city and build concrete blocks over it?
    Well, a terrible future will take place in the city of istanbul where Ali Agaoglu, one of the emerging monsters of new construction projects in istanbul is killing centuries old forests to construct a 320.000 square meter building complex by cutting centuries old trees and disrupting natural life in istanbul. it is stated that arab sheiks already bought couple of towers from the same complex.
    who will stop this monster?
    google “maslak 1453” you will see and hopefully do something before it is too late.. 
    Help!

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