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Earthquakes pose significant risk to 75 million Americans in 39 States. We monitor and report earthquakes, assess earthquake impacts and hazards, and research the causes and effects of earthquakes. Our program is part of the larger, National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP), a four-agency partnership established by Congress.
The Earthquake Hazards Program monitors and reports earthquakes, assesses earthquake impacts and hazards, and researches the causes and effects of earthquake.
A simple text format suitable for loading data into spreadsheet applications. This is a good option for manual scientific analysis.
A flexible, extensible and modular XML representation of seismological data which is intended to cover a broad range of fields of application in modern seismology.
This feed format is suitable for loading into applications that understand Keyhole Markup Language (KML) such as Google Earth™.
A well-structured format readily parsed by most programming languages. This is a good option for software developers wishing to use earthquake data.
A basic syndication format supported by a variety of feed readers. This is a good option for casually subscribing to earthquake information.
The Earthquake Notification Service (ENS) is a free service that sends you automated notifications to your email or cell phone when earthquakes happen.
Tweet Earthquake Dispatch (TED) offers two Twitter accounts. On average, each account will produce about one tweet per day.
Feel an earthquake? Report it here. View reported earthquakes in your area.
Get real-time earthquake notifications sent to you using a number of popular mediums: Feeds, Email, Twitter, etc…
View recent events or search for past earthquakes. Optimized for mobile and desktop.
View recent events or search for past earthquakes. Optimized for mobile and desktop.
Reducing risk where tectonic plates collide—U.S. Geological Survey subduction zone science plan
The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) serves the Nation by providing reliable scientific information and tools to build resilience in communities exposed to subduction zone earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, and volcanic eruptions. Improving the application of USGS science to successfully reduce risk from these events relies on whole community efforts...Gomberg, Joan S.; Ludwig, Kristin A.; Bekins, Barbara; Brocher, Thomas M.; Brock, John C.; Brothers, Daniel; Chaytor, Jason D.; Frankel, Arthur; Geist, Eric L.; Haney, Matt; Hickman, Stephen H.; Leith, William S.; Roeloffs, Evelyn A.; Schulz, William H.; Sisson, Thomas W.; Wallace, Kristi; Watt, Janet; Wein, Anne
Reducing risk where tectonic plates collide
Most of the world’s earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, and volcanic eruptions are caused by the continuous motions of the many tectonic plates that make up the Earth’s outer shell. The most powerful of these natural hazards occur in subduction zones, where two plates collide and one is thrust beneath another. The U.S. Geological Survey’s (USGS) “...Gomberg, Joan S.; Ludwig, Kristin A.
Advanced National Seismic System—Current status, development opportunities, and priorities for 2017–27
SummaryEarthquakes pose a threat to the safety of over 143 million people living in the United States. Earthquake impacts can be significantly reduced if communities understand their risk and take proactive steps to mitigate that risk. The Advanced National Seismic System (ANSS) is a cooperative effort to collect and analyze seismic and geodetic...
Effective stress, friction and deep crustal faulting
Studies of crustal faulting and rock friction invariably assume the effective normal stress that determines fault shear resistance during frictional sliding is the applied normal stress minus the pore pressure. Here we propose an expression for the effective stress coefficient αf at temperatures and stresses near the brittle-ductile transition (...Beeler, N.M.; Hirth, Greg; Thomas, Amanda M.; Burgmann, Roland
The comparative limnology of Lakes Nyos and Monoun, Cameroon
Lakes Nyos and Monoun are known for the dangerous accumulation of CO2 dissolved in stagnant bottom water, but the shallow waters that conceal this hazard are dilute and undergo seasonal changes similar to other deep crater lakes in the tropics. Here we discuss these changes with reference to climatic and water-column data collected at both lakes...Kling, George; Evans, William C; Tanyileke, Gregory
How to build and teach with QuakeCaster: an earthquake demonstration and exploration tool
QuakeCaster is an interactive, hands-on teaching model that simulates earthquakes and their interactions along a plate-boundary fault. QuakeCaster contains the minimum number of physical processes needed to demonstrate most observable earthquake features. A winch to steadily reel in a line simulates the steady plate tectonic motions far from the...Linton, Kelsey; Stein, Ross S.
Rapid earthquake characterization using MEMS accelerometers and volunteer hosts following the M 7.2 Darfield, New Zealand, Earthquake
We test the feasibility of rapidly detecting and characterizing earthquakes with the Quake‐Catcher Network (QCN) that connects low‐cost microelectromechanical systems accelerometers to a network of volunteer‐owned, Internet‐connected computers. Following the 3 September 2010 M 7.2 Darfield, New Zealand, earthquake we installed over 180 QCN sensors...Lawrence, J. F.; Cochran, E.S.; Chung, A.; Kaiser, A.; Christensen, C. M.; Allen, R.; Baker, J.W.; Fry, B.; Heaton, T.; Kilb, Debi; Kohler, M.D.; Taufer, M.
Seismological analyses of the 2010 March 11, Pichilemu, Chile Mw 7.0 and Mw 6.9 coastal intraplate earthquakes
On 2010 March 11, a sequence of large, shallow continental crust earthquakes shook central Chile. Two normal faulting events with magnitudes around Mw 7.0 and Mw 6.9 occurred just 15 min apart, located near the town of Pichilemu. These kinds of large intraplate, inland crustal earthquakes are rare above the Chilean subduction zone, and it is...Ruiz, Javier A.; Hayes, Gavin P.; Carrizo, Daniel; Kanamori, Hiroo; Socquet, Anne; Comte, Diana
Logs and data from trenches across the Berryessa Fault at the Jerd Creek site, northeastern Napa County, California, 2011-2012
The primary purpose of this report is to provide drafted field logs of exploratory trenches excavated across the Berryessa Fault section of the northern Green Valley Fault (Lienkaemper, 2012; Lienkaemper and others, 2013) in 2011 and 2012 that show evidence for at least one surface-rupturing earthquake in the past few centuries. The site location...Lienkaemper, James J.; Rosa, Carla M.; Cappelle, Ian J.; Wolf, Evan M.; Knepprath, Nichole E.; Piety, Lucille A.; Derouin, Sarah A.; Reidy, Liam M.; Redwine, Joanna L.; Sickler, Robert R.
Global surface displacement data for assessing variability of displacement at a point on a fault
This report presents a global dataset of site-specific surface-displacement data on faults. We have compiled estimates of successive displacements attributed to individual earthquakes, mainly paleoearthquakes, at sites where two or more events have been documented, as a basis for analyzing inter-event variability in surface displacement on...Hecker, Suzanne; Sickler, Robert; Feigelson, Leah; Abrahamson, Norman; Hassett, Will; Rosa, Carla; Sanquini, Ann
Response of Global Navigation Satellite System receivers to known shaking between 0.2 and 20 Hertz
Over the past decade, several technological advances have allowed Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) receivers to have the capability to record displacements at high frequencies, with sampling rates approaching 100 samples per second (sps). In addition, communication and computer hardware and software have allowed various institutions,...Langbein, John; Evans, John R.; Blume, Fredrick; Johanson, Ingrid
Triggered aseismic slip adjacent to the 6 February 2013 Mw 8.0 Santa Cruz Islands megathrust earthquake
Aseismic or slow slip events have been observed in many subduction zones, but whether they affect the occurrence of earthquakes or result from stress changes caused by nearby events is unclear. In an area lacking direct geodetic observations, inferences can be made from seismological studies of co-seismic slip, associated stress changes and the...Hayes, Gavin P.; Furlong, Kevin P.; Benz, Harley M.; Herman, Matthew W.
Title: Underwater Secrets of the Hayward Fault Zone: Integrated 3D imaging to understand earthquake hazards
- Underwater imaging provides a unique opportunity to study urban fault hazards.
- How do we link surface structures to depths where earthquakes occur?
- How does "acoustic trenching" help us understand earthquake history?
Interviews with staff at Point Reyes National Seashore tell how this National Park Service unit uses USGS science to educate visitors, and manage the park.
USGS Research Geophysicist Kate Allstadt conducts experiments at the U.S. Geological Survey debris-flow flume, near Eugene, Oregon. Dr. Allstadt and her group are working toward an understanding of how debris flows generate seismic signals. The quantitative information will be used in the development of improved technologies for detecting debris flows to mitigate their destructive effects.
Nearly 60 years after a magnitude 7.7 earthquake struck Lituya Bay, Alaska — leading to a tsunami that devastated the area — six U.S. Geological Survey geologists revisited the isolated region of Alaska, to pick up where their scientific predecessors left off. In this photo, members of the USGS research team pause to take in the view of South Crillon Glacier from a study site along the Fairweather Fault in southeast Alaska.
Trench site along the southern Fairweather Fault, in Glacier Bay National Park, Alaska. The alluvial fan at left consists of lake, stream channel and debris flow deposits impounded by the Fairweather Fault scarp, at right.
USGS research geologist Kate Scharer with her finger on the Fairweather Fault in southeast Alaska. The magnitude 7.8 Lituya Bay earthquake caused shaking that toppled trees along the fault, which left a break in the forest shown here.
Periodic calving of ice from the snout of South Crillon Glacier.
The field team included USGS geologists Rob Witter, Adrian Bender, Chris DuRoss, Peter Haeussler, Richard Lease and Kate Scharer
View of Glacier Bay National Park from the air.
This video presents a visualization of shaking that was recorded in the Frontier Building in Anchorage, Alaska, during the Mw7.1 earthquake, January 24, 2016, Iniskin, Alaska. It exhibits how a tall building behaves and performs during strong earthquake shaking. Note that relative to the height of the building, the motions are magnified by a factor of 300 to show deformation characteristics. This video also shows how structural monitoring projects by the USGS National Strong Motion Project can benefit the engineering and research community by capturing real-life shaking in buildings such as the Frontier Building in seismic areas.
Standing masonry buildings in Kathmandu suggest that shaking was not amplified in the valley sediments surrounding Kathmandu
Earthquakes are estimated to cost the nation $6.1 billion annually in building stock losses according to an updated report published today by FEMA.
Subduction zone events pose significant threats to lives, property, economic vitality, cultural and natural resources and quality of life. The tremendous magnitudes of these events are unique to subduction zones, and they can have cascading consequences that reverberate around the globe.
The USGS Earthquake Hazards Program recently released a new strategic plan for earthquake monitoring entitled the “Advanced National Seismic System – Current Status, Development Opportunities, Priorities, 2017-2027.”
Budget Focuses on Core USGS Science and Efficiency
This EarthWord isn’t a new dance-move; it’s been around since we’ve had tectonic plates...
Members of the news media are invited to attend the next Earthquake Country Alliance - Bay Area Regional Workshop to be held at the U.S. Geological Survey in Menlo Park on May 23. ECA workshops are educational and informational opportunities to learn more about the latest in earthquake science, preparedness, and mitigation, as well as to arrange interviews with subject matter experts.
It’s not just something you run into on a golf course-it’s this week’s EarthWord!
Early on the morning of August 24, 2014, Loren Turner was awoken by clattering window blinds, a moving bed, and the sound of water splashing out of his backyard pool. He experienced what is now named the “South Napa Earthquake.”
Which U.S. State or territory has more large earthquakes than the rest of the United States combined?
Geologists have discovered evidence that unusual seas detached living corals from a Caribbean reef and scattered them far inland, as boulders, during the last centuries before Columbus arrived. The new findings will reinforce precautions against coastal hazards, Caribbean tsunami specialists said.
Small variations in the density of the earth’s crust—undetectable to humans without sensitive instruments—influence where earthquakes may occur in the central United States. These new findings from the U.S. Geological Survey, published today in Nature Communications, may allow scientists to map where future seismicity in the center of the country is most likely.
The U. S. Geological Survey is seeking volunteers to host temporary seismic stations in the Walnut Creek/Pleasant Hill/Concord California area. Volunteers will be assisting with a new ground motion study that will begin in March 2017.