New Madrid Fault Zone



The New Madrid Fault Zone, sometimes called the New Madrid Fault Line, is a major seismic zone and a prolific source of intraplate earthquakes (earthquakes within a tectonic plate) in the southern and midwestern United States, stretching to the southwest from New Madrid, Missouri. The New Madrid fault system was responsible for the 1811-12 New Madrid earthquakes and has the potential to produce large earthquakes in the future. Since 1812, frequent smaller earthquakes have been recorded in the area. Earthquakes that occur in the New Madrid Seismic Zone potentially threaten parts of eight American states: Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, Arkansas, Kentucky, Tennessee, Oklahoma and Mississippi. Read more ...




Punctuated earthquakes for New Madrid area: New research uncovers cluster of past events   PhysOrg - November 6, 2018

In 1811 and 1812, the region around New Madrid, Missouri, experienced a number of major earthquakes. The final and largest earthquake in this sequence occurred on the Reelfoot fault, and temporarily changed the course of the Mississippi River. These earthquakes are estimated to be just shy of magnitude 8.0 and devastated towns along the Mississippi River - soil liquefied, houses collapsed, and chimneys toppled. Because of the 1811-1812 earthquakes, the New Madrid area is recognized as a high-hazard zone for potential future seismic events. Previous investigations found have also found evidence for multiple, older earthquake events preserved in the geologic record.




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