Earthquake to Hit California at Fault

The Charger Bulletin

By Mike Smith – Staff Writer

Worried about earthquakes? Ready for the next one to strike? If you live in California…be prepared. The “big one” is finally upon us.

After multiple earthquakes across the globe, which caused immense devastation throughout Haiti and Chile, researchers at the University of California reevaluated their prediction of “the big one.” Considered to be the earthquake that would “destroy most of the western coast,” the initial projection made nearly ten years ago predicted a tremor to fall across the San Andreas Fault. The fault, which runs 810 miles through California, is the tectonic boundary between the Pacific and North American plate. Divided into three segments, the San Andreas Fault runs through a majority of major cities. The San Francisco peninsula and the San Francisco Bay Area sit directly on the northern segment, best known for causing the 1906 earthquake that rumbled through the majority of California. With a rate of slippage of approximately 33 mm per year, the fault is slowly moving, with plate shifting causing increasing worry for researchers.

Since 2005, researches at the University of California have warned the California area of “the big one”, which would occur across the entire fault and cause rumblings larger than 7.0 on the Richter scale to stretch across the entire western coast. Focused along the fault line, “the big one” would cause extensive damage to Palm Springs and other densely populated California cities including Los Angeles, San Diego, and Baja California. Some rumblings and additional damage could reach as far as Oregon and Mexico.

Why now? Researchers, who have predicted the coming of “the big one” for the past 10 years, say the increased earthquake activity across the world will probably cause additional aftershocks through earth’s volcanic rock. “One earthquake is never the answer,” spoke one professional, “Once an earthquake the size of Haiti’s occurs, it is nearly a matter of time before other fault lines start to move.”

Unlike Haiti, there is a good chance the people and government of California could prepare ahead of time for “the big one”. Since its discovery in 1895, extensive work has been done throughout the region to support buildings, roads, and bridges surrounding the San Andreas Fault. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger assured the people of California on Friday, “We will be prepared for the earthquake. The state of California will not falter.”

Be prepared to see an extensive earthquake hit the United States along the San Andreas Fault line in the foreseeable and near future. For more details, visit