Magnitude 7.1 Quake, Back-to-Back, Chile, Argentina
The earthquake shook 25 km directly beneath a hilly region dotted with farms, although surely impacting Tirua, and other nearby towns Puren, Traiguen, Temuco, and Padre Las Casas. As this was a “shallow” earthquake, it likely produced lots of shaking on the surface compared to deeper quakes.
Of high interest is the location of today’s earthquake, which is only 40 km from the location of the largest earthquake of 2010, a magnitude 8.8 that shook the world during 27-Feb-2010.
Not only that, but just yesterday, a magnitude 7.0 shook Argentina, just 1,600 km to the northeast. Two magnitude 7 earthquakes back-to-back within 24 hours, is not something that happens very often.
The annual 100 year average is just 15 magnitude-7 earthquakes, while we’ve already received 2 during just the second day of the year.
The region is located on the edge of the Nazca tectonic plate, which itself is pressed against the Pacific plate, the ring of fire. Numerous volcanoes dot the boundary up and down the South American coast of Chile and Argentina.
Stay tuned and check back at MSB for updates as more data becomes available.
Update, Oddly, there has been only one aftershock so far (magnitude 5), more than 2 hours after the main event.
After more than 3 hours, only the 2nd apparent aftershock rumbled. I say “apparent” because this one shook a full 42 km away from the epicenter of the main event, rather than close by, like most aftershocks. Curious…
A reader reported, “You should note that Jupiter is conjoining Uranus (geocentric), the earth is close to the sun Jan 3rd, and there is a partial solar eclipse Jan 4th”. With that information, I ran my simulator, and sure enough – perfect alignment, as shown in the image just created…
Update, 3-Jan-2010, Only 3 aftershocks so far. It seems that after an earthquake of this magnitude, one would expect many more by now. One aftershock took place near the epicenter. However two others took place far away, in fact, exactly 42 km away (each of them), each one offset by nearly a perfect 90 degree angle. Probably coincidence, but maybe it is indicating something about the stress occurring in the layer beneath.
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