Earthquake swarm off Oregon coast has been ‘building up’

Earthquakes

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – Upwards of 60 earthquakes have been recorded off the Oregon coast – starting Tuesday and continuing through Wednesday.

The quakes occurred along the Blanco Fault Zone –Oregon’s most active fault. The biggest reached a magnitude of 5.8.

Despite the number of quakes, experts say there’s no cause for concern as it’s commonplace for earthquake swarms to occur in this zone, KOIN 6 News Chief Meteorologist Natasha Stenbock said.

Portland State University geology professor Scott Burns explained how the magnitude of these quakes affects the aftershocks.

“They’re farther out and haven’t had huge numbers in that area, so they’ve been building up for a long time. The other thing is when the value is higher, the biggest one was 5.8. The bigger the quake, the more earthquakes after that will occur. So, there will be a lot more of them. The numbers are related to the size of the biggest one,” Burns explained.

It is also important to note that due to these magnitudes, there are no tsunami concerns. Burns told KOIN 6 News that the quakes would have to reach magnitudes greater than eight along that fault for a tsunami to occur.

Burns said despite the recent quakes “the bottom line – they’re not ones we need to be worried about.”

Even though these recent quakes are no cause for concern, it is a reminder for Oregonians to practice earthquake preparedness.

“It’s a reminder that we live in earthquake country. We do have the potential for the ‘big earthquake’ so everyone should have a kit at home with food, water, medicine, just in case we have to go into camping mode for two to three weeks when the big one hits,” Burns said.

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