earthquake preparedness

Earthquake Early Warning
4:24 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

What Would You Do With A Few Seconds Warning Of Coming Quake?

The proposed early earthquake warning system, included in the federal budget this weekend, is designed to give a heads up about strong shaking coming from a distance along the West Coast.
Credit Andy Maguire / Flickr

The new federal budget sent to the president's desk over the weekend included $5 million for an earthquake early warning along the West Coast. 

The proposed early warning system can't predict earthquakes. It's designed to give a heads up about strong shaking coming from a distance. It has worked because electronic signals can travel faster than rumbling over the surface.

Depending on how close you are to the epicenter, U.S. Geological Service geophysicist Doug Given said you could get an alert anywhere between ten seconds to a minute in advance.

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Oregon Capitol Renovation
7:27 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Oregon Capitol Renovation Would Include Seismic Upgrades

Base isolators like this one would be used to stabilize the capitol building in the event of an earthquake.
Credit Oregon Legislature

Oregon's state capitol building could soon undergo a massive renovation. It's a project so big, lawmakers would have to use a temporary capitol for more than three years.
 
Senior project manager Tary Carlson says the idea is to help the Depression-era capitol building withstand a major earthquake.

"When this was built 76 years ago, they did not design for lateral forces of a seismic event such as a Cascadia Subduction Zone," Carlson says.

And so what would be left if the Big One hits?

"A pile of rubble," Carlson says.

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