Friday, May 20, 2011

Earthquake monitoring websites

So let's say that you had an interest in knowing when the most recent large earthquakes had occurred. I know of two sites with this information:

As I write this, the USGS website was last updated at Sat May 21 4:30:07 UTC 2011 (or, to put it another way, a half hour after 6:00 pm in Kiribati). As of now, the last reported earthquake at either site was a 21-MAY-2011 02:43:17 4.5 earthquake south of Panama.

A couple of things to note:

First, it takes some time for earthquakes to be reported on the various websites. In fact, the USGS website includes the following disclaimer:

The maps and lists show events which have been located by the USGS and contributing agencies within the last 7 days. They should not be considered to be complete lists of all events M2.5+ in the US and adjacent areas and especially should not be considered to be complete lists of all events M4.5+ in the world. Beginning January 1, 2009, earthquakes outside the US below M4.5 are not reported unless NEIC obtains felt reports.

Second, it should also be noted that the Pacific Ocean is a relatively heavy earthquake area. Even if multiple large earthquakes strike in the Pacific in the next few hours, that doesn't necessarily mean that a world-wide series of earthquakes is about to occur.

As of now, I've heard no reports of recent major quakes west of the International Date Line. Sound like Harold Camping is a false prophet - again.
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