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Is Alaska at risk of a tsunami to rival 1964?

January 10, 2019 7:34 PM
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Is Alaska at risk of a tsunami to rival 1964?

ALASKA has seen a staggering 98 earthquakes in just 10 days, but is the US state at risk of a tsunami to rival that of 1964?

Earthquakes today: Alaska has had nearly 100 earthquakes since the year began (Image: GETTY/ GOOGLE MAPS)

Tsunamis are likely to occur around Alaska, and one still fresh in people’s minds is the tsunami which followed a mammoth magnitude 9.2 earthquake in 1964.

At least 121 were people were killed in Alaska – 15 from the earthquake and a further 106 following the tsunami.

Professor Bill McGuire, emeritus professor of earth sciences at University College London, explained to Alaska’s susceptibility to tsunamis due to the magnitude of earthquakes which occur.

He said: “Very big offshore quakes do trigger tsunamis capable of crossing the entire Pacific.

Earthquakes today: Alaska's position on two plate boundaries are the reason for so many quakes (Image: USGS)

“The gigantic magnitude 9.2 quake in 1964 triggered a tsunami that was as high as 60 metres locally and which reached 20 countries around the Pacific Rim.

He said: “A major worry is a quake in the so-called 'Shumagin Gap' where the Alaska Subduction Zone fault has not ruptured in living memory.

As seismic activity continues in Alaska, the so-called 'Shumagin Gap' will be one to watch according to Professor McGuire.


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