Monday, January 28, 2008

Small earthquakes shift views

By Sandi Doughton
Seattle Times science reporter

For decades, the "doomsday" fault off the coast of Washington and Oregon has appeared to be locked tight, building up stress that scientists say will one day be unleashed in a monster earthquake and tsunami.
Now researchers from Oregon State University (OSU) have discovered that portions of the fault have actually been slipping, leading to a series of small earthquakes over the past several years — including one Thursday.
The finding doesn't mean a major quake is more — or less — likely to strike anytime soon. It does provide a new window through which to study the fault and understand what it might do next.

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