Strong earthquakes rock shaken New Zealand city - again
2011 06 14

By David Cohen | CSMonitor.com

This has not been a great year for those in the business of predicting natural disasters – just ask Harold Camping, the Christian radio broadcaster who prophesied that the world as we know it would end last month.

Scientists in New Zealand, however, are (perhaps not so surprisingly) better at their predictions; though they might be ruing their talent in the wake of yet another spate of nasty temblors in this country’s second-largest city, radiating out across half of these shaky isles, including the desk in Wellington where these words are being gingerly typed.

Late last month, residents of Christchurch, already seriously frazzled by two major earthquakes and 6,000 aftershocks since last September, awoke to the news that the region’s GNS Science had set the chances of another quake in the next year at 1 in 4. Specifically, the organization had put the likelihood of a magnitude-6.0 or -7.0 earthquake over the next 12 months at 23 percent, with a 90 chance of a shake between 5.0 and 6.0.


Liquefaction during most recent quake in Christchurch, June 2011.

These predictions had native Cantabrians reaching for their telephones and thus Mayor Bob Parker for his laptop.

While not wanting to take anything away from these figures, Mr. Parker responded to concerns soothingly. It was important to note that the warning related to the entire region in which the city of Christchurch, home to around 400,000 Kiwis, is a relatively small part. The probability of any such quake again hitting the city was therefore “significantly lower.”

Early today, however, those probabilities were shown to be significantly higher, with both categories of tremors striking within a 90-minute period: first a nasty magnitude-5.5 jolt, with a genuinely unpleasant 6.0 encore at 2:20 p.m. Their combined seismic weight took down at least another 50 buildings in the immediate city and caused much liquefaction to bubble up again on the eastern side of what used to be known as New Zealand’s Garden City.

Still, there were no reports of serious casualties this time. Except, perhaps, to the fervent faith of some of us down here who hoped a little too hard that our scientific prophecies of doom might go the way of Mr. Camping’s predictions.


Article from: csmonitor.com
Top Image: Damaged St. John the Baptist Church is seen following a series of earthquakes that shook Christchurch, New Zealand, June 13.
Geoff Slone/New Zealand Herald/AP














Related Articles


Latest News from our Front Page

Breaking—CDC whistleblower: “I’ve stopped lying”
2014 09 18
Explosive…explosive…explosive… What more could anyone want in the way of evidence for an ongoing crime? There is a video posted at the autism media channel/YouTube, and at Age of Autism: “William Thompson’s call to Congress.” It is a recording of a telephone call between CDC whistleblower Thompson and Brian Hooker, PhD. No date is given. Presumably, the call was recorded before August 27, when ...
Ebola patients buying survivors’ blood from black market, WHO warns
2014 09 18
As hospitals in nations hardest hit by Ebola struggle to keep up, desperate patients are turning to the black market to buy blood from survivors of the virus, the World Health Organization warned. The deadliest Ebola outbreak in history has killed at least 2,400 people in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone -- the countries most affected by the virus. Thousands more are ...
Scottish independence referendum LIVE UPDATES
2014 09 18
Scottish voters go to the polls on Thursday to choose whether or not to break away from the UK and form an independent state. The ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ campaigns have been neck-and-neck in the pre-ballot polls. Both sides in the referendum debate are making their final pitch to voters. It comes as three new polls show the result remains too close ...
Exponential growth of Ashkenazi Jews following a Medieval population bottleneck
2014 09 17
A recent paper by Marta Costa et al. found that around 80% of Ashkenazi mitochondrial DNA had a prehistoric European origin (and ruled out the Khazar hypothesis). Combined with previous Y chromosome studies indicating that the male line is Middle Eastern, the results suggested a scenario in which Jewish males married European females after traveling to Europe. Now another paper, ...
Bankers Rule: City of London vs. Scottish Independence
2014 09 17
Now that the independence referendum is too close to call, the bankers express their worry. The media blitz ramps up to tip the outcome. Scottish independence has finally rattled the City of London has the usual banksters forecasting the dislocations from a currency panic. Scotland has a long and noteworthy history of banking. Money, savings and investing is entrenched in the ...
More News »