Earthquake Weather?

Discussion in 'California' started by NileGuide, Mar 18, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. There’s been quite a stir today around San Francisco as video of Jim Berkland’s earthquake prediction circulates the web. Berkland is a retired geologist, who previously worked at the U.S. Geological Survey, and is most famous for his prediction of the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake.
    Berkland believes California is at risk for seismic activity sometime in the next week, March 19 – 26. This “seismic window” is based on a series of anomalies he hypothesizes could indicate an impending quake. According to Berkman, this includes changing behaviors in animals, fish washing ashore (as they recently did in Southern California), as well as the “highest tidal force on the 19th” (due to the supermoon, the closest the moon has been to earth since 1993) combined with the spring equinox the next day. Maybe we can add today’s San Mateo county tornado warnings to the list?
    Click here to view the embedded video.
    Small funnel cloud touching down at Ocean Beach – courtesy of Neorick/YouTube
    Whether or not this series of events will lead to a quake, well, it’s anyone’s guess. As a born and raised east coaster, I frankly have no idea what to do in the event of an earthquake. Stand in a door frame? Crawl under a table? My first exposure to an earthquake was while watching the TV episode of the family drama Our House in 1987, the one where there’s an earthquake and a young Shannen Doherty avoids it because she’s flying in an airplane. I remember asking my mom -why doesn’t she feel the earthquake up in the air?
    While I don’t want to fuel the panic fire, visitors and non-native Californians should be informed. The website www.72hours.org gives great advice on how to prepare and what to do in disastrous situations, including earthquakes and tsunamis. A few key points:
    • Drop, cover, and hold on. Cover your head and neck.
    • Avoid anything heavy that could crush or injure you (windows, mirrors, hanging objects, appliances)
    • If you’re in downtown San Francisco, stay inside a building, unless there is a fire or gas leak. There’s very little open space to avoid being hit from high-rise debris. Don’t use elevators.
    • If you’re outside, avoid power lines, buildings, and trees. If driving, pull over and stop, but not under an over pass. At the beach? Get to higher ground, fast.
    I heard an unconfirmed report that the tsunami which hit Japan traveled inland for 6 miles. Considering San Francisco is 7×7, that’s a lot of our pretty city. Fortunately, San Francisco has 47 hills, the highest being Mount Davidson at 928 feet and Twin Peaks at 922 feet. More densely populated parts of the city have the options of Bernal Heights at 433 feet (in the Mission? go here), Buena Vista Heights at 569 feet (in the Haight? go here), and Nob Hill and Pacific Heights are both around 370 feet (close to downtown, Fisherman’s Wharf, Tenderloin).
    I leave you with a fascinating New York Times article from 1884 covering the subject of earthquake weather, a term I had never heard before I moved to California. Stay safe out there, my prepared friends.


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  2. kiwi
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    kiwi Gold Member

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    Oh no not here too. There's a crackpot with similar theories getting too much publicity in NZ at the moment.

    Please do not spread panic by repeating their theories which have been widely debunked by geophysicists.
     
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  3. Gargoyle
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    Gargoyle Milepoint Guide

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    The "supermoon" effect is trivial, and as kiwi mentions it has been completely debunked by real scientists.

    There is so much solid data available, why are you referencing an unconfirmed report. Oh, sorry, that's right- you're NileGuide, you're an automated newsfeed, not a real human bean. Why am I even talking to you???
    :D
     
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  4. wiredboy
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    wiredboy Silver Member

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    Growing up in Northern California we used to refer to earthquake weather. That was a long time ago and I can't remember what we were referring to. Was it warm and dry? Or things were very quiet and it was moderately warm?
     
  5. N965VJ
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    N965VJ Silver Member

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    According to Snopes, "earthquake weather" is hot and dry. It's also a myth. ;)
     
  6. deant
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    deant Milepoint Guide

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    My wife and I live in So. California and figure that if there is ever a big quake, we will have ocean front property........only it will be the east coast.
     
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  7. kwai
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    kwai Gold Member

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    That's hilarious.

    People are inclined to believe whatever is told to them. The lack of critically assessing information is woefully absent... and so, tripe like this will be believed and propagated. And as we've seen, the more something is repeated the more it is taken as fact.
     
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