New Fault Discovered in Arkansas

7 04 2009

The following post is NOT MY WORK! I stress this because I am not the one to take credit for it whatsoever! I have posted at the bottom of the article a link to the original page which I retrieved it from. Let’s just say I’m “Retweeting” it – WordPress Style.

“Scientists believe that an unknown fault in eastern Arkansas could eventually trigger a magnitude 7.0 earthquake with an epicenter near a major natural gas pipeline.” ~ Original Author

From the Associated Press:

Haydar Al-Shukri, the director of the Arkansas Earthquake Center at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, said the fault is separate from the New Madrid fault responsible for a series of quakes in 1811-12 that caused the Mississippi River to flow backward.

Acres of cotton fields cover the fault west of Marianna, about 100 miles east of Little Rock, but stretches of fine sand mixed with fertile soil gave away the fault’s location, Al-Shukri said. Liquefied sand bubbled up through cracks in the earth, while ground radar and digs showed vents that let the sand reach the surface, he said.

The fault, likely created in the last 5,000 years, sparked at least one magnitude 7 earthquake in its history. Such temblors cause massive destruction in their wake.

“This is a very, very dangerous (area) at risk of earthquake,” Al-Shukri said. “When you talk about (magnitude) 7 and plus, this is going to be a major disaster.”

Al-Shukri did not identify a time frame for the potential earthquake.

Such a quake would affect Little Rock and neighboring states such as Tennessee and Mississippi, Al-Shukri said.

The researcher has said a gas pipeline crossed the newly discovered fault. He declined to name the company that owned the pipeline. Al-Shukri had said in a speech at the University of Arkansas’ Clinton School of Public Service that the company was building a large line through the area, mirroring the old one’s path.

A map made by the Arkansas Public Service Commission shows an Arkla Energy Resources pipe in the area. A spokeswoman for CenterPoint Energy Inc., which owns Arkla, said Wednesday that the company worked closely with public officials to prepare response plans for earthquakes and other natural disasters.”

Original Author’s Page