Geohazard expert: Prepare for Arkansas quake, pipelines at risk

Wednesday, September 5, 2012
By Paul Martin


A geohazard supervisor with the Arkansas Geological Survey has advised Monday that people and pipelines in northeast Arkansas are at risk of the real possibility of an earthquake and to be prepared.

“On average, the region is having an earthquake every other day, so residents need to be ready,” said Scott Ausbrooks, geohazard supervisor with the Arkansas Geological Survey about northeast Arkansas.

Ausbrooks is urging residents to prepare for an Arkansas earthquake, saying the risk of a major earthquake occurring in northeast of the state is a “real possibility.”

“Unreinforced masonry buildings, brick buildings with no ductile frames (are at greatest risk),” Ausbrooks said. “When it shakes, there is nothing to hold it together.”

“In a given 50-year period, the USGS (United States Geological Survey) says there is a 7 to 10 percent chance (of a magnitude 7 or greater earthquake),” he said.

“When you look at a 6 to a 6.7 on the high end, still a decent size and damaging earthquake, there is a 25 percent chance in the next 50 years.”

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