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December 27, 2004

Island of Sumatra Moved by Quake

Wow. I first heard about the quake in the Indian Ocean yesterday morning while watching the beginning of This Week (while I was waiting for Bozo Phil to get off my regular program). I knew that it had to be seriously major because they were already reported that it reached 9.0 on the Richter Scale. See, as a resident of Northridge during that quake, I heard many theories about earthquakes: including that they averaged the measurement for the Northridge Quake instead of reporting how big it was at the epicenter so as to calm the nerves of scared Angelenos. Frankly, that's probably hogwash conspiracy theories but there you go.

So the LAT reports:

The magnitude 9.0 earthquake that struck off Indonesia on Sunday morning moved the entire island of Sumatra about 100 feet to the southwest, pushing up a gigantic mass of water that collapsed into a tsunami and devastated shorelines around the Indian Ocean and the South China Sea. ...

Seismologists will use the opportunity to learn a great deal about the Earth's structure, Hudnut said. Because of the magnitude of the temblor, "the whole Earth would be ringing like a bell for a long time," he said. That effect will be like a gigantic medical CT scan, allowing researchers to study the structure of Earth's interior in detail.

I'm not sure how big Sumatra is, but it moved 100 feet and that's a signficant distance even if it was just a speck of land. Goodness. Someone else reported that the earthquake cause a glitch in the Earth's rotation. And to think that the land under our feet will be ringing like a bell for a long time. Exactly what does that mean? More earthquakes?

Posted by cj at December 27, 2004 10:41 AM

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