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AbledSurvival post banner shows a screen shot from ABCNews Good Morning America's weather center with the one of the hosts standing in front of a large screen monitor showing the Pacific 'Ring of Fire' of volcanoes and earthquake zones. The Headline reads, 8.2 earthquake in Chile and 5.1 Quake in L.A. Raise Concerns About 'Ring of Fire'.
AbledNews Photo shows a global map centered over the Pacific Ocean showing the Pacific RIm of Fire, as it's called - a trail of glowing images from New Zealand up along the east coast of Asia across to Alaska and down the west coast of the America's shows the number of earthquakes registered between 1893 and 2003 as glowing from green to yellow to orange/red for the highest magnitudes.

More Than 1,700 Earthquakes Worldwide In The Past 7 Days

An 8.2 magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of Chile Tuesday, April 1st, and triggered landslides, power outages and a tsunami that was similar to a high tide. Thanks to stricter building codes and increased earthquake awareness and preparedness programs implemented in recent years by the Chilean government, the death toll as of Wednesday stood at 6.

 

UPDATE: Wednesday, April 2, 2014: Two Major Aftershocks Hit Chile

 

AbledNews-Map from CBS shows the west coast of Chile and two locations of radiating red rings showing the epicenters of the main earthquake that hit Tuesday and the aftershock that followed on Wednesday.

 

That may possibly change following two big aftershocks, the first registering magnitude 6.4, followed 45 minutes later by a magnitude 7.8 aftershock. The latest tremors caused buildings to shake in the coastal port of Iquique, which was also hit by the earthquake on Tuesday, but there are no immediate reports of injuries.

 

The death toll was in stark contrast to the 500 people who died when a magnitude 8.8 earthquake hit in February of 2010 – so strong that it moved an entire city 10 feet (3.048 meters) to the west.

 

This time around, it’s estimated more than 2,500 homes were structurally damaged because of poor workmanship and almost 928,000 people were evacuated.

 

Chile, one of the most active earthquake zones on Earth, sits on the notorious ‘Ring of Fire’ a trail of fault lines and volcanoes that circle the Pacific from New Zealand up along the east coast of Asia, across the Bering Strait between Russia and Alaska, and down the west coast of Canada , the United States, Mexico, central America and South America.

This quake and its more than 20 aftershocks, along with the 5.1 earthquake and its aftershocks that hit Los Angeles in the previous week, have many people wondering if there will be more activity along the so-called ‘Ring of Fire’, but Kate Hutton, staff seismologist at the California Institute of Technology (CIT), explained, “The most obvious aspect of earthquake distribution is its randomness in time, though not geography. The biggest risk is aftershocks for the 8.2 in the same area where the 8.2 occurred. They’ll become less frequent in time, but the risk still exists for days and weeks.”

 

Her colleague at CIT, geophysicist Mark Simons says, “The key point here is that this 8.2 is not the large earthquake that we were expecting for this area. He said, “We’re actually still expecting potentially an even larger earthquake.”

Screen shot of a video on the Nazca Techtonic Plate at the UK Geological Society. Click here to go to their site to view the video.

That’s because the area sits on what is called the “Iquique seismic gap” where the greatest pressure builds up from the Nazca techtonic plate that plunges under the South American plate moving at a speed of 2.5 inches (6.7 cm) a year.

 

The last major earthquake to hit this gap was in 1877. It measured 8.8 and triggered a Tsunami that caused fatalities as far away as Hawaii and Japan. Since then the plates have moved about 12 yards (11 meters) along the fault, which is why scientists expect a higher magnitude earthquake.

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Banner: Earthquake Preparedness

What To Do Before – During – After An Earthquake

 

We’ve gathered a number of videos and tips to help you know what to do if you live in a seismic fault zone and an earthquake hits. First some tips from Michigan Technological University

 

 

What to Do Before an Earthquake

 

  • Make sure you have a fire extinguisher, first aid kit, a battery-powered radio, a flashlight, and extra batteries at home.
  • Learn first aid.
  • Learn how to turn off the gas, water, and electricity.
  • Make up a plan of where to meet your family after an earthquake.
  • Don’t leave heavy objects on shelves (they’ll fall during a quake).
  • Anchor heavy furniture, cupboards, and appliances to the walls or floor.
  • Learn the earthquake plan at your school or workplace.

What to Do During an Earthquake

 

  • Stay calm! If you’re indoors, stay inside. If you’re outside, stay outside.
  • If you’re indoors, stand against a wall near the center of the building, stand in a doorway, or crawl under heavy furniture (a desk or table). Stay away from windows and outside doors.
  • If you’re outdoors, stay in the open away from power lines or anything that might fall. Stay away from buildings (stuff might fall off the building or the building could fall on you).
  • Don’t use matches, candles, or any flame. Broken gas lines and fire don’t mix.
  • If you’re in a car, stop the car and stay inside the car until the earthquake stops.
  • Don’t use elevators (they’ll probably get stuck anyway).

What to Do After an Earthquake

 

  • Check yourself and others for injuries. Provide first aid for anyone who needs it.
  • Check water, gas, and electric lines for damage. If any are damaged, shut off the valves. Check for the smell of gas. If you smell it, open all the windows and doors, leave immediately, and report it to the authorities (use someone else’s phone).
  • Turn on the radio. Don’t use the phone unless it’s an emergency.
  • Stay out of damaged buildings.
  • Be careful around broken glass and debris. Wear boots or sturdy shoes to keep from cutting your feet.
  • Be careful of chimneys (they may fall on you).
  • Stay away from beaches. Tsunamis and seiches sometimes hit after the ground has stopped shaking.
  • Stay away from damaged areas.
  • If you’re at school or work, follow the emergency plan or the instructions of the person in charge.
  • Expect aftershocks.
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