Swarm of earthquakes in Alaska puzzles scientists - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Swarm of earthquakes in Alaska puzzles scientists

Posted:
  • More Local NewsMore Local NewsMore>>

  • Severe Weather Threatens the Two Virginias

    Severe Weather Threatens the Two Virginias

    (WVVA)- A low pressure system will be passing us to our north on Sunday, bringing with it the potential for dangerous weather.This weather scenario is very complex, and it looks like we could be...More >>
    (WVVA)- A low pressure system will be passing us to our north on Sunday, bringing with it the potential for dangerous weather.This weather scenario is very complex, and it looks like we could be...More >>
  • Picnic with the Saints sold out

    Picnic with the Saints sold out

    White Sulphur Springs, W. Va. (WVVA) -A special picnic in White Sulphur Springs with the NFL team New Orleans Saints has sold out. The event is scheduled for tomorrow at the Greenbrier Resort. More >>
    White Sulphur Springs, W. Va. (WVVA) -A special picnic in White Sulphur Springs with the NFL team New Orleans Saints has sold out. The event is scheduled for tomorrow at the Greenbrier Resort. More >>

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - A moderate earthquake shook northwest Alaska on Monday, the fifth temblor of the same magnitude since April in an area with otherwise little activity, seismologists said.

The magnitude-5.7 quake struck at 4:01 a.m. Monday northeast of the village of Noatak, the Alaska Earthquake Center reported. As with other temblors in the earthquake swarm, the quake was felt in Noatak, an Inupiat Eskimo community of 560 people.

"It woke me up," said resident Alvin Ashby. "Some people slept through it."

People there aren't used to earthquakes, and these have some residents worried, said Ashby, who has lived in the community most of his life.

Before the swarm that began April 18, the last known quake of similar size in the area was a magnitude-5.5 quake that occurred in 1981, earthquake center seismologist Natasha Ruppert said.

The swarm of magnitude-5.7 quakes is connected to more than 300 smaller aftershocks, some with magnitudes in the high 3s, Ruppert said. The first quake and the others of that magnitude have been located in roughly the same area about 20 miles from Noatak. The community is 70 miles north of the Arctic Circle.

Monday's quake was preceded by one minute by a magnitude-4.2 foreshock and followed by at least 10 aftershocks.

Minor damage from the earthquakes includes cracks in walls in Noatak, but no injuries have been reported.

Ruppert said old seismic faults have been mapped in the area, but there are no known active faults, although that doesn't mean there aren't any. She said sometimes surface fault scars could be hidden by vegetation or glacial deposits.

"Obviously, since we are having all this earthquake activity, there must be some active faults in the area," Ruppert said.

Since the first of the swarms occurred, seismic sensors have been installed in Noatak and the regional hub town of Kotzebue, 55 miles south. Ruppert said the sensors help gather more accurate information about the earthquakes.

The series of earthquakes has scientists puzzled about activity that is considered very unusual in the area.

"At this point, we don't really understand the nature of these earthquakes," Ruppert said.

Ruppert said she doesn't believe there is any connection between the quakes and the Red Dog Mine, located about 35 miles north of Noatak.

"All mining activities are very near the surface," Ruppert said. "And all the earthquakes are miles below the surface."

  • NEWSMore>>

  • Expect traffic delays as repairs are made in wake of tunnel fire

    Expect traffic delays as repairs are made in wake of tunnel fire

    NEWS RELEASE -Periodic lane closures are being scheduled for the coming weeks as repairs continue following the Friday afternoon tractor-trailer fire inside I-77 East River Mountain Tunnel...More >>
    NEWS RELEASE -Periodic lane closures are being scheduled for the coming weeks as repairs continue following the Friday afternoon tractor-trailer fire inside I-77 East River Mountain Tunnel...More >>
  • Businesses in Bluefield West Virginia

    Businesses in Bluefield West Virginia

    BLUEFIELD (WVVA)- A couple of fast food chains in Bluefield,West Virginia are no longer on Cumberland Ave. Wendy's closed for financial reasonsand according to Mark Meachum, President of the Bluefield Chamber of Commerce, "Arby's as you're aware, the franchisee claimed bankruptcy in a number of Arbys."Not all businesses in Bluefield are having a hard time.Ahmed Anu the owner of Portobella's says, "Just right now I think to myself, business is good. We did good."His Italian restaurant has been...More >>
    BLUEFIELD (WVVA)- A couple of fast food chains in Bluefield,West Virginia are no longer on Cumberland Ave. Wendy's closed for financial reasonsand according to Mark Meachum, President of the Bluefield Chamber of Commerce, "Arby's as you're aware, the franchisee claimed bankruptcy in a number of Arbys."Not all businesses in Bluefield are having a hard time.Ahmed Anu the owner of Portobella's says, "Just right now I think to myself, business is good. We did good."His Italian restaurant has been...More >>
  • Police look for missing man

    Police look for missing man

    William "NIck" DanielWilliam "NIck" Daniel
    RALEIGH CO. (WVVA) – Police in Beckley are looking for a man who went missing last week.William “Nick” Daniel, 26, was last seen July 24...More >>
    RALEIGH CO. (WVVA) – Police in Beckley are looking for a man who went missing last week.William “Nick” Daniel, 26, was last seen July 24...More >>
  • Couple stops robbery suspect in his tracks

    Couple stops robbery suspect in his tracks

    Beckley, W Va (WVVA) - A husband and wife are able to stop a robbery suspect in his tracks...More >>
    Beckley, W Va (WVVA) - A husband and wife are able to stop a robbery suspect in his tracks...More >>
  • List of 2014 School Start Dates

    List of 2014 School Start Dates

    WEST VIRGINIA SCHOOLS START DATESFayette County: August 13Greenbrier County: August 18McDowell County: August 18Mercer County: August 7Monroe County: August 18Raleigh County: August 20Summers County: August 13Wyoming County: August 21VIRGINIA SCHOOLS START DATESBland County: August 15Giles County: September 2Tazewell County: August 21Wythe County: August 13More >>
    WEST VIRGINIA SCHOOLS START DATESFayette County: August 13Greenbrier County: August 18McDowell County: August 18Mercer County: August 7Monroe County: August 18Raleigh County: August 20Summers County: August 13Wyoming County: August 21VIRGINIA SCHOOLS START DATESBland County: August 15Giles County: September 2Tazewell County: August 21Wythe County: August 13More >>
  • Police search for robbery suspect

    Police search for robbery suspect

    Fairlea (WVVA) – Police are on the lookout for a man suspected of robbing a video lottery parlor.The robbery happened Sunday night at Abbies around 11:30 p.m. in Fairlea...More >>
    Fairlea (WVVA) – Police are on the lookout for a man suspected of robbing a video lottery parlor.The robbery happened Sunday night at Abbies around 11:30 p.m. in Fairlea...More >>
  • Burglary suspect enters plea

    Burglary suspect enters plea

    Raleigh County (WVVA) –A man charged with burglarizing a home pleads guilty in court. Jason Pittman faces up to 15 years in prison.More >>
    Raleigh County (WVVA) –A man charged with burglarizing a home pleads guilty in court. Jason Pittman faces up to 15 years in prison.More >>
  • Water company to give educational plant tours

    Water company to give educational plant tours

    CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- A water company whose Charleston treatment plant was contaminated by a coal-cleaning agent in January is holding a public tour next week.West Virginia American Water Co. will conduct the free "WaterFest" event Aug. 9.Spokeswoman Laura Jordan tells the Charleston Daily Mail it's the first time the company will hold such an event in Charleston.It will include plant tours, educational demonstrations and recreational activities for children. The event is designed to info...More >>
    CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- A water company whose Charleston treatment plant was contaminated by a coal-cleaning agent in January is holding a public tour next week.West Virginia American Water Co. will conduct the free "WaterFest" event Aug. 9.Spokeswoman Laura Jordan tells the Charleston Daily Mail it's the first time the company will hold such an event in Charleston.It will include plant tours, educational demonstrations and recreational activities for children. The event is designed to info...More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WVVA.
All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, Terms of Service and Mobile Privacy Policy & Terms of Service.

Persons with disabilities who need assistance with issues relating to the content of this station's public inspection file should contact Administrative Assistant Audrey Sluss at (304) 324-0659. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, at 888-835-5322 (TTY) or at fccinfo@fcc.gov.