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Mika McKinnon Jul 5
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: Are these SoCal earthquakes going to trigger an earthquake in San Francisco? In Portland? In Vancouver? A: No. The Earth is really big. The distances are far. The fault systems are separate. More details upthread & in puppy-thread. See also:
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Mika McKinnon Jul 5
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Okay, now this is fun. I'm going to make you play geophysicist. Scroll up thread to the field photos of the crack in the road with the nicely-offset road line. From standing on one side, is the other side moving left or right?
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Mika McKinnon Jul 5
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Yup, North American is on the creatively-named North American Plate. We're all in this together.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 5
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Yes, that's exactly what aftershocks are! The trick is now close is "close"? Check out the puppy thread (particularly howling) for more on that idea, but the energy released by the M7.1 earthquake absolutely impacted the stress on nearby faults.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 5
Replying to @mikamckinnon
From the USGS Latest Earthquake map (), we've got another cluster happening a smidge farther north. Yes, those are all close enough that it's probably related faults all creaking & resettling More technical:
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Mika McKinnon Jul 5
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Far NorCal, up at Humboldt (& the southernmost Cascade volcano, Lassen), is actually on the Cascadia subduction zone with the rest of the Pacific Northwest (Portland, Seattle, Vancouver). 📷 USGS
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Mika McKinnon Jul 5
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: Can we get a bonus prep tip? A: Sure, you can always do more! Charge up external batteries, pack a charge cable in you go bag, and think about if you can pull off alternate forms of communication. Such as:
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Mika McKinnon Jul 5
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Part of why tonight's earthquake felt different than usual MAY be because Californians are used to San Andreas and this cluster is in the Eastern California Shear Zone / Mojave Block. Did it feel kinda like 1992 Landers?
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Mika McKinnon Jul 5
Replying to @GlobalBC
Q: I live in the PNW and I kinda hate you right now. A: I live in Vancouver, BC. I feel you so hard. I'll be on tomorrow morning (~7:40?) to talk our quakes. But it's not impossible to survive. Advice from Chile, home of M8 & M9 quakes:
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Mika McKinnon Jul 5
Replying to @USGS
Q: How severe are these aftershocks going to be? A: website is still being funky, but their aftershock forecast is posted on FB: That's a near-certainty SoCal will get M6 aftershocks, 9% chance you'll experience an earthquake larger than the M7.1
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Mika McKinnon
Q: How bad was this earthquake? A: A shakemap captures intensity, how severe we expect shaking to feel at the surface. This was a major earthquake. We got lucky on location.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @latimes
All hail local reporting. has a detailed description of how the earthquake felt and current damage:
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
We classify strike-slip earthquakes by if you’re standing on one side, does it look like the other moved left or right? This one moved right (dextral):
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: Erm, so about falling into the ocean... A: Continental plate “floats” above denser oceanic plate, so our land is staying up here. But in subduction zones (PNW), the plate buckled as stress builds, then slaps down & our. You get coastal submergence
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: How do you evacuate with no car? A: If a city issued evacuation orders, they’re also going to include dedicated buses for people who can’t drive. But yeah, there’s still barriers (). Check on your neighbours.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: Ugh, this is what people deserve for living in California. A: Nope. No, you do not get to do that near me. Find your compassion and try again. Everywhere has disasters. It’s a question of which ones you’re comfortable with. I pick earthquakes over tornadoes. You do you.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: Did you goof your math? A: Probsbly. It’s been a long few days & tweets don’t have an edit button. 1 step up in magnitude is 10x bigger & 32x more energy released. Play with: Read:
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
So seiche are REALLY COOL. They’re resonance waves, the water equivalent of playing on a swing. Resonance depends on size, so a wineglass, bathtib, pool, lake, or bay will have different frequencies.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: New Madrid? A: I’m going to stay focused on West Coast seismology for this week, but I’ll totally do explainers on it next week if you remind me. For now:
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: I have disabilities & I’m uncertain what to do. A: Unfortunately, disasters aren’t fair. During major catastrophes that take down a region, community resources will be scare. Make plans based on your lowest functionality. Plan 4 people deep for help. Have meds for 2 weeks.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: I’m broke & can’t afford to prep. A: Money makes resiliency easier (supplies, ability to evacuate, retrofit, less marginal land, higher tax base for response...), but you don’t need cash to drill (Drop! Cover! Hold!) & to make a plan. Build a kit from what you have already
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: Is having a bunch of earthquakes in one place normal? A: Yes. It’s extremely common (effectively always) to have aftershocks of gradually decreasing intensity & frequency. Remember our puppy-pile! Foreshocks before a bigger main quake are less common, but not too rare.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @apukwa
Prep for your pet! But during the actual quake, stick with Drop! Cover! Hold on! Unless you’re coincidentally already hiding your pet, you’re better off waiting until after shaking stops to check on them. gave good details & resources in replies.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
1. This is the cutest drill ever. 2. Puppies & earthquakes is totally our theme this week.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: I am anxious and freaking out and scared. Help? A: That's totally valid. Disasters are stressful! You've been through a major event (& keep getting aftershocks!). It makes sense you need to debrief and talk it out. Mental health resources:
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @USGSVolcanoes
Q: Are these earthquakes the start of a volcanic eruption???? A: No. These earthquakes are following an aftershock pattern, not a pre-eruption pattern. If you’re concerned, check . Details:
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @NerdNiteYVR
All sorts of events produce seismic waves. Geophysicists are really good at prying them apart. Details (in the context of nuclear tests & teenage sex): I also did a talk on this last month; I’ll try to find a video.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @fema @Safety_Canada
Q: Hah. Hah. Hah. His how am I supposed to get 2 extra weeks of medication?! A: It’s going to depend on doctor & insurance, but you can sometimes make headway by citing official emergency preparation guidelines like those put out by or .
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Are you ready to learn about soft stories? US seismic codes are good enough we mostly don’t worry about collapsing buildings. The exception is weak walls(garages, big window walls) or few interior walls (parking towers, open concept offices, malls)
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Q: Where do I shelter if I’m in a building with a soft story? A: Try to get it retrofitted BEFORE the earthquake to better resist shear. External bracing is stylish! But if that’s not an option? Shelter near the interior/most intact walls. Assume that open part will collapse.
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Mika McKinnon Jul 6
Replying to @mikamckinnon
Gorgeous quick animation of the earthquakes so far. See what I means about wriggly puppies setting each other off? You can totally spot the outlines of the faults (shape of the metaphorical dog bed)
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