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Little-Known Quake, Tsunami Hazards Lurk Offshore of Southern California

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While their attention may be inland on the San Andreas Fault, residents of coastal Southern California could be surprised by very large earthquakes – and even tsunamis – from several major faults that lie offshore, a new study finds.

The latest research into the little known, fault-riddled, undersea landscape off of Southern California and northern Baja California has revealed more worrisome details about a tectonic train wreck in the Earth’s crust with the potential for magnitude 7.9 to 8.0 earthquakes. The new study supports the likelihood that these vertical fault zones have displaced the seafloor in the past, which means they could send out tsunami-generating pulses towards the nearby coastal mega-city of Los Angeles and neighboring San Diego.

“We’re dealing with continental collision,” said geologist Mark Legg of Legg Geophysical in Huntington Beach, California, regarding the cause of the offshore danger. “That’s fundamental. That’s why we have this mess of a complicated logjam.”

Legg is the lead author of the new analysis accepted for publication in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface, a journal of the American Geophysical Union. He is also one of a handful of geologists who have been trying for decades to piece together the complicated picture of what lies beyond Southern California’s famous beaches.

Read more; http://right.is/watercooler/2015/05/little-known-quake-tsunami-hazards-lurk-offshore-of-southern-california-1657.html

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