Home > Uncategorized > FYI: Cascadia Subduction Zone

FYI: Cascadia Subduction Zone

Could something like the 2011 Japanese tsunami-earthquake occur in North America? The short answer is- YES

The long answer is- Cascadia Subduction Zone

The Cascadia subduction zone (also referred to as the Cascadia fault) is a subduction zone, a type of convergent plate boundary that stretches from northern Vancouver Island to northern California. It is a very long sloping fault that separates the Juan de Fuca and North America plates.

Major cities affected by a disturbance in this subduction zone would include Vancouver and Victoria, British Columbia, Seattle and Vancouver, Washington, and Portland, Oregon.

It gets better..

The last known great earthquake in the northwest was in January 1700, the Cascadia Earthquake. Geological evidence indicates that great earthquakes may have occurred at least seven times in the last 3,500 years, suggesting a return time of 300 to 600 years.There is also evidence of accompanying tsunamis with every earthquake, and one line of evidence for these earthquakes is tsunami damage, and through Japanese records of tsunamis. A future rupture of the Cascadia Subduction Zone would cause widespread destruction throughout the Pacific Northwest.

Widespread destruction is a mild term for what would be essentially a humongous loss of human life and property.

Recent findings concluded the Cascadia subduction zone was more hazardous than previously suggested. The feared next major earthquake has some geologists predicting a 10% to 14% probability that the Cascadia Subduction Zone will produce an event of magnitude 9 or higher in the next 50 years, however the most recent studies suggest that this risk could be as high as 37%. Geologists have also determined the Pacific Northwest is not prepared for such a colossal earthquake. The tsunami produced may reach heights of approximately 30 meters (100 ft).

You have seen what tsunamis of 1/3rd that height recently did in Japan. Factor in the potential tsunami-amplifying effect of various narrow passages between Vancouver Island (Victoria), Vancouver and Seattle. Even a 50 feet tsunami on the open coast of the pacific northwest WILL become a monster of unforeseeable proportions once it is amplified by the various narrow inlets, straights, coves, and islands in the Victoria-Vancouver-Seattle triangle.

Let me remind you that the PNW was sparsely populated in 1700 (last time). If a similar event occurred today- a significant part of the built up areas in Victoria, Vancouver and Seattle would be wiped off the face of this earth. There would be very little warning of any tsunami, given the short distance from the fault to the shore (less than 1 hr- tsunami travel time).

Parts of Vancouver and Seattle also face the prospect of earthquake-induced soil liquefaction. It is a safe bet that an earthquake of magnitude 8.5 or above in the cascadia subduction zone near the pacific northwest will kill tens of thousands (minimum) through a combination of tsunamis and earthquakes plus cause extensive structural damage in large parts of major coastal cities/towns in that area. I personally would like to see final casualties in the hundreds of thousands and, touch wood, single digit millions (mostly on the canuck side).

Moreover, survivors may not want to keep residing on the PNW coast. In combination with a low endogenous population growth and lack of real productive industries (except maybe Seattle), it will eventually shatter the lives of millions- and provide endless entertainment for people like me.

Comments?

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Columnist
    March 17, 2011 at 12:56 am

    “and provide endless entertainment for people like me.”

    Endless entertainment, why? Who are people like you?

  2. psnw
    March 17, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    you are a sick fuck………….

  3. AndrewV
    March 18, 2011 at 7:20 pm

    “I personally would like to see final casualties in the hundreds of thousands and, touch wood, single digit millions (mostly on the canuck side).”

    Are you still ticked about the burning of Washington and the White House in 1814? Remember you guys started that war.

  4. A
    March 19, 2011 at 6:48 pm

    “The largest and most destructive tsunamis on Canada’s west coast are generated by earthquakes at
    the Cascadia subduction zone, where the oceanic Juan de Fuca plate moves beneath North America.
    Geological evidence indicates that large tsunamis from this source have an average recurrence of about 500
    yr. Numerical modelling suggests that the waves of these tsunamis may reach up to 5 m asl along the outer
    coast of Vancouver Island and up to 15-20 m asl at the heads of some fjords. When such a tsunami next
    occurs, the first waves will strike the west coast of Vancouver Island less than 30 min after the earthquake,
    thus there will be little time to evacuate low-lying areas. Waves will attenuate as they move eastward
    through Juan de Fuca Strait and the narrow waterways separating the Gulf Islands, and they will probably
    be no higher than 1 m at Vancouver.”

    So, probably no major loss of Canuck life, you sad little cretin.

  5. Vancouver resident
    August 10, 2012 at 5:24 pm

    Check the studies and science prior to making such wild claims.

    http://www.richmond.ca/safety/prepare/city/hazards/tsunamis.htm

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