LARGEST QUAKES -
Live Seismograms - Worldwide (update every 30 minutes)
This morning -
5.0 KEPULAUAN TALAUD, INDONESIA
5.0 NEAR EAST COAST OF HONSHU, JAPAN
5.0 JUJUY, ARGENTINA
6.2 SOUTHERN PERU
5.8 FIJI REGION
5.9 MAULE, CHILE
5.1 TONGA REGION
Ireland - Mayo earthquake surprises geologists. A leading seismologist has said Wednesday's earthquake off the west coast was “unexpected” and poses “very interesting questions for geologists”. The earthquake, which registered a magnitude of four on the Richter scale, was recorded as 60km west of Belmullet, County Mayo, at a depth of 3km, at 8.58am. It was THE LARGEST LOCAL SEISMIC EVENT EVER RECORDED.
It was also the second-largest local earthquake on record in either Britain or Ireland – the first being of 5.4 magnitude on July 19th, 1984, off the west coast of Wales and felt in Waterford and Wicklow. A 2.7 magnitude tremor was recorded in Lisdoonvarna, County Clare, in May 2010.
The Irish Coast Guard recorded instances of structural damage to houses in Erris, County Mayo and the British Geological Survey said the impact was felt in Galway, Mayo and Sligo. The Geological Survey of Ireland said earthquakes of this magnitude at this depth were “not very unusual although not common”.
However, while the earthquake was classified as “moderate”, it was “significant” in that it challenged existing information about seismic activity off the west coast. The location, just 23km south to southeast of the Corrib gas wells, prompted a call for reassurance that this was not connected to seismic testing Shell EP Ireland was due to initiate on the Corrib gas field last Friday. Many concerned residents wanted to know whether the existing Corrib gas infrastructure had been damaged.
A North Mayo hostel owner said the earthquake had shaken the foundations of her 250-year-old stone cottage and she was concerned about the impact on the offshore pipeline for the Corrib gas project and the refinery, situated on bog. The seismic traces were examined and they were “caused by earthquakes and nothing else”. Shell EP Ireland said the seismic survey had not started and it had “no reason to believe that this event has had any impact on the sub-sea infrastructure. However, as a precautionary measure, a visual inspection of the offshore infrastructure will be carried out in the coming days."
The tremors had caused “no unusual wave activity”, said an Irish Coast Guard officer. The Coast Guard said it had confirmed this with two vessels working on the Corrib gas field. The Geological Survey said there could be some small aftershocks.
Hawaii - Tuesday a “whopping” number of earthquakes shook around Hawaii volcano. A large number of earthquakes had been rattling the Volcano area on Hawaii Island over the last few days. The quakes have been small, with no damage reported. Still, a handful of those temblors have been 3.0 magnitude and over.
The USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory’s “Recent Earthquakes in Hawaii” page showed a constant swarm of quakes surrounding the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, home of the active Kilauea Volcano. The long list stretches all the way back to Friday, June 1st. 16 earthquakeswerealready registered on the list before noon on Tuesday, Hawaii time. The GPS network recorded weak extension overall for the past few months with superimposed contraction and extension fluctuations corresponding to DI tilt events. Seismic tremor levels were generally low, decreasing from a peak around 11 am Sunday.
A whopping thirty-three earthquakes were strong enough to be located beneath Kilauea volcano: 4 deep earthquakes below the southwest rift zone, 3 beneath the west edge of the summit area, 7 within and below the upper east rift, 1 north of the middle east rift zone, 7 on south flank faults, and 11 mostly shallow long-period earthquakes within the Koa`e Fault Zone beneath the Kulanaokuaiki Camp Ground; a quick check showed no obvious new cracking on the surface near the campground.
The rise of the Kilauea summit lava lake level in Halemaumau crater continued with several overflows of the inner ledge. At Pu`u `O`o, scientists report lava also rose within the east collapse pit; to the southeast, lava flows continued to advance on the coastal plain.
The 20-metre Japanese dock that floated to the US has been scraped clean and sterilised with torches to prevent the spread of invasive species. The dock broke loose during last year's Tsunami and floated across the Pacific, bringing seaweed, shellfish and other organisms. A dozen volunteers made short work of it on Thursday on Agate Beach near Newport, Oregon. Scientists who examined the marine life clinging to the dock said there was a chance some could establish a foothold in Oregon if they were not disposed of properly. One in particular was a kind of edible seaweed known as wakame. The dock washed up Tuesday, more than a year after being torn loose from a fishing port in northern Japan.
The 165-tonne structure made of concrete, metal and tires, and studded with starfish and barnacles, has tested negative for radiation. A plaque on the 20m-long (66ft) structure, which was first mistaken for a barge, shows it came from the port of Misawa in northern Japan.
It has taken 15 months to drift across the Pacific to Agate beach since the earthquake and resulting tsunami shook it loose. Two other docks from the same port are still missing. The structure is one of a number of items that have washed up on north American shores. Experts expect a surge of debris in the coming months, with the bulk of it due in the winter. The senior senator for Oregon has asked the body tracking the debris to redouble its efforts saying something as big as a dock could pose a danger to ships at sea.
This April, the US Coast Guard used cannon to sink a crewless Japanese ship that drifted to Alaska after the tsunami. A month later, a Japanese owner of a Harley-Davidson motorbike swept away by the tsunami was amazed to find out that it had been washed up inside a container on a beach in Canada - about 6,400km away. Japanese scientists estimate that some 20 million tonnes of debris were generated by the earthquake and the incoming rush of water. Most would have stayed on land, and a fair proportion pulled out to sea would have sunk rapidly. But it is possible a million tonnes of debris is still afloat.
A starfish native to Japan was among the marine life still clinging to the structure. Hundreds of other organisms, such as tiny crabs and algae, posed a "very clear threat". Two options were being considered for its removal. The dock could be towed off the beach and floated somewhere for disposal, or cut up on the beach. The plaque has been put in storage. "We're working with some salvage experts to get advice on whether it's even possible to move it, whether we have to wait for some certain conditions, like another high tide, or whether there's some other way to do it." The owners of the port in Misawa have said they do not want it back.
Meanwhile, local residents have been causing traffic jams in the beach car park as they come to see it for themselves. "It's kind of scary seeing this wash up here because we all surf. If this crossed the Pacific Ocean and it's this big, that means that just about anything of our worst nightmares could cross the Pacific Ocean. So we're kind of frightened of what's to come". (map of debris location)
TROPICAL STORMS -
In the Indian Ocean -
Tropical cyclone 20s (Kuena) was located approximately 240 nm south of the Seychelles. The final warning has been issued on this system. The system will be closely monitored for signs of regeneration.
British adventurer fights for survival in Pacific tropical storm - A 27-year-old woman trying to row solo across the Pacific Ocean was “holding on” hoping for rescue after her 23-foot boat was hit by a tropical storm. The storm, named Mawar, rolled her 6.95-metre (23ft) boat several times, more than 500 miles off Japan. The boat has been damaged, the extent of which is as yet unknown. She told her support team she is "safe and doing well", and is being picked up by the Japanese Coast Guard.
Another storm-hit UK rower is also awaiting rescue from his Pacific attempt - The two British sailors have abandoned attempts to row across the Pacific Ocean and are awaiting rescue after being hit by the tropical storm. The two were separately attempting to row from Japan to the United States.
SPACE WEATHER -
CHANCE OF FLARES - The odds of a significant solar flare are improving as three sunspots develop complex magnetic fields with energy for M-class eruptions.