Originally published on Sat August 27, 2011 9:53 am
The magnitude-5.8 earthquake that rattled the eastern U.S. on Tuesday took everyone — even geologists — by surprise. But even when there are reasons to think an earthquake could be around the corner, scientists still can't make good predictions.
Governor Jay Nixon, Congressman Russ Carnahan, and two members of President Obama's cabinet - education secretary Arne Duncan and Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano - watched as the 19 students in Lucy Duffey's class dropped to the ground, covered their heads, and held onto tables in the library.
Tomorrow marks the St. Louis kickoff of the bicentennial events commemorating the earthquakes that struck the New Madrid Seismic Zone in 1811-12. You’ve probably heard stories about those quakes: that church bells rang in Boston, that the Mississippi River ran backwards. Much of that, it turns out, is legend. So what do we know about the New Madrid fault and the risk it poses to the modern Midwest?