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Nov 10 / USGS Newsroom

USGS Animations Show Intense Ground Shaking From 7.8 Great ShakeOut Scenario Quake

New 3-D animations showing the way ground in the Southern California would move and shake during the very strong 7.8 earthquake scenario planned for the Great Southern California ShakeOut will be shown and available to the media on November 12. 

The Shake Out earthquake scenario animations will provide statewide emergency responders a graphic tool to visualize the devastating effects of ground movement and shaking in several locations, including the Los Angeles Basin, for the Golden Guardian statewide emergency response exercise, November 13 -18.  The animations will also offer another tool for scientists and policy-makers attending the International Earthquake Conference at the Omni Hotel November 12-14.

These new computer animations assist engineers, first responders, Southern California decision-makers and residents prepare for a large earthquake on the San Andreas Fault at a magnitude that has occurred in the past and may occur again in the future.

The new animations show how the underlying geology and geologic variations in Southern California have a strong influence on the intensity and pattern of shaking.  Homes, businesses, schools and other essential infrastructure built in areas underlain by soft sediments are at significantly greater risk during intense ground shaking. The results from these simulations are one of the important tools developed for the Great Southern California ShakeOut/ Golden Guardian exercise made available for use in engineering studies and emergency response planning in preparation for the next big earthquake.


Earthquake expert Lucy Jones, Director of the USGS Multi-Hazards Demonstration Program

Brad Aagaard, Geophysicist, Developer of the ground shaking visualizations

Kenneth Hudnut, Geophysicist, ShakeOut Scenario Coordinator for Earthquake Design

Robert Graves, Seismologist, Author of the ground shaking simulation








Noon, Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Omni Hotel, California Plaza, 251 South Olive Street, Los Angeles, Hershey/Crocker Room

More information about the Great Southern California ShakeOut can be found at

Information about the scientific conference can be found at

Information about the Golden Guardian 2008 emergency response exercise can be found at

Media materials prepared by USGS for the Great Southern California ShakeOut can be found at


[Via USGS]

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