Monday, January 23, 2012

6.2 Mag Quake Strikes Chile Near Bio-Bio

A 6.2 magnitude earthquake struck today near Bio-Bio in Chile, off the coast. No tsunami warning was issued (at least according to the few reports I read). The quake was at a depth of 29.7KM, and was followed by a 4.9 aftershock. The town of Tome' was the hardest hit, with shaking in the area characterized as strong-very strong on the USGS scale. The quake was felt further inland.

Chile is prone to frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, and resides entirely on the rim of the Pacific Ring of Fire, the tectonic plate boundary where the majority of Earth's active volcanoes are located.

Chile has seen some very strong quakes in recent years, with an 8.8, and 9.0 striking last year alone. The 9.0 quake did cause a tsunami, that resulted in only one fatality (a guy from my hometown no less!) where a man was taking pictures of the wave at his own risk, and got swept up the West Coast from California and ended up in Oregon. Some damage was caused by the tsunami in various ports where boats got knocked together, and a minor wave also 'hit' Hawaii, although this caused little damage as well.

There is no word yet on whether or not the current quake caused any damage or injuries. 

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