6.0 Quake Hits Napa Valley California

6.0 earthquake Napa Valley 2014

Recent Earthquakes in California and Nevada – Index Map

The entire state is shaking especially the southern half below Los Angeles and the northern half above Soledad.  The 6.0 quake today is a minor fault north of San Francisco’s bay.  The quiet section of the San Andreas continue to have either extremely small or no quakes due to it being very hard bound up.  It will blow soon with a major 9.0 quake.

 

Magnitude 6.0 earthquake reported in Napa County – SFGate

 

A fire at a Napa mobile home park destroyed at least three homes. A water main break was hampering firefighting efforts, Becker said.

 

Some power lines down in western Contra Costa County, but Bay Area bridges appeared to be fine, according to the California Highway Patrol.

 

There were widespread reports of power outages, gas leaks and flooding in the North Bay, with at least 15,000 Pacific Gas and Electric Co. customers without power in Vallejo, Napa, Rohnert Park, Santa Rosa and Sonoma. Police reminded motorists to stop at darkened intersections.

 

A relatively minor quake causes disruptions in water mains and causes fires from gas lines.  A dangerous one-two punch.  So far, there is no way of fixing this or even preparing for this.  Most of the infrastructure is very vulnerable to collapse or burning down.  Very little has been done overall to deal with earthquakes.

 

Laws have been passed, though, but with odd consequences.  For example, this law:  L.A.’s Earthquake Hazard Zone Provides Parks for Rich People | Popular Science

 

But it turns out that the Los Angelenos who live closest to the San Andreas Fault are more affluent than those living further away. The key reason appears to be a law that was originally passed to reduce damage during a major quake, according to a new paper in the journal Earth’s Future, which is published by the American Geophysical Union.

 

In the wake of the terrible damage caused by 1971’s San Fernando earthquake, California passed the Alquist-Priolo Earthquake Fault Zoning Act, or AP Act. The law mandated a 50-foot buffer zone around earthquake fault zones, to prevent building on lands most likely to crack open during a major quake.

 

So instead of being developed, AP Act areas in Los Angeles became parks, green open spaces that have attracted more well-off residents to the surrounding residential neighborhoods. Homes abutting the parks — de facto the lots closest to the San Andreas Fault — are today the most valuable parcels of land in these neighborhoods.

 

This is hilarious.  But then, ignoring the future is how many of us operate.

 


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