Most people in our area think an earthquake is something that happens in Alaska, California, Japan or around the Pacific Rim. They don’t remember that one of the strongest earthquakes ever recorded was north of here along the Mississippi basin.
From the National Weather Service office in Shreveport this morning comes word that earthquakes may happen closer than we think. The Weather Service reported:
“A 3.2 Earthquake occurred near Timpson, Texas at around 10 AM this morning (Tuesday, September 4th). At this time, no damage was reported. Let us know if you have any reports.”
Earthquakes are caused by the movement far below the surface of two tectonic plates. There will be a break as two plates move against one another. This releases a tremendous amount of energy and in many instances the surface may split or move.
The largest earthquake ever recorded in North America was actually three quakes in the New Madrid, Missouri area in 1811 and 1812. That is now the New Madrid Seismic Zone in the middle of the North American Plate.
Just north of us the state of Arkansas recorded 88 earthquakes between June 24th and July 5th in 1982. And almost 40,000 quakes were recorded in Arkansas from 1982 to 1985. Most were small and were not felt by anyone.
Louisiana is not immune. Lake Charles experienced an earthquake in 1983. It registered 3.8 on the Richter scale.