Haiti Could Be in New Earthquake Cycle, Scientists Say

by Crystal Gammon, OurAmazingPlanet Contributor – Jan 26, 2012

Haiti’s quake history from 1900-2010. The depths and magnitudes are indicated.
Credit: USGS.

The magnitude-7.0 earthquake that shook Port-au-Prince, Haiti, two years ago nearly demolished the city and took both residents and geologists by surprise.

Now, a team of scientists thinks they’ve identified a centuries-long pattern of earthquakes on the island of Hispaniola, which comprises both Haiti and the Dominican Republic, that could portend earthquakes to come.

Although past seismic activity can’t be used to predict future quakes, the findings may help residents and those hoping to rebuild Port-au-Prince prepare for the next big one, said William Bakun, a geologist with the U.S. Geological Survey in Menlo Park, Calif.


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