Why was the Northridge earthquake so destructive?

Asked By: Malco Gotschalg | Last Updated: 6th February, 2020
Category: science geology
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17, 1994, a hidden fault lurking under the city's San Fernando Valley neighborhoods unleashed a magnitude 6.7 earthquakethat shattered buildings, broke water mains and ignited fires. The so-called blind thrust fault — one with no surface features to reveal its presence — caused a block of earth to move upward.

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Herein, how did the Northridge earthquake affect the environment?

The Northridge earthquake was the costliest natural disaster to have occurred in the United States at the time, and is today the third largest economic loss caused by a natural disaster in the nation's history. The damage cost estimate reached $20 billion in damages, and $49 billion in economic loss.

Secondly, why was the Northridge Earthquake significant? The Northridge earthquake produced extremely strong ground shaking, which caused the greatest damage in the United States since the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. The Northridge earthquake was caused by dip slip on a thrust fault—the overriding movement of one crustal block up and over a second crustal block (see p.

Also to know is, how bad was the Northridge earthquake?

The 6.7 magnitude earthquake damaged several buildings as well as destroying all communications, such as telephone lines and causing computer systems to shut down. The seismic event killed two CSUN students at the Northridge Meadows Complex along with 14 other residents.

How did people die in the Northridge earthquake?

At 4:31 on the morning of January 17, 1994, the Northridge Earthquake hit Southern California. It was reported that 57 people died immediately from the temblor, though later data cited a count of 72, including heart attacks and other quake-related causes of death.

34 Related Question Answers Found

How many people died in earthquake in California?

The quake is the largest in Southern California since the 1994 magnitude 6.6 Northridge earthquake, USGS geophysicist Paul Caruso said. That quake, which was centered in a heavily populated area of Los Angeles, killed 57 people and caused billions of dollars of damage.

What will you do during an earthquake?

If you are indoors during an earthquake
  • DROP to the ground; take COVER by getting under a sturdy table or other piece of furniture; and HOLD ON until the shaking stops.
  • Stay away from glass, windows, outside doors and walls, and anything that could fall, such as lighting fixtures or furniture.

How many people died in Bam earthquake?


The shock had a moment magnitude of 6.6 and a maximum Mercalli intensity of IX (Violent). The earthquake was particularly destructive in Bam, with the death toll amounting to at least 26,271 people and injuring up to 30,000.

What is the significance of 1994 Northridge earthquake insurance?

In January 1994 when the Northridge earthquake, a magnitude 6.8 quake, struck Southern California, causing an estimated $25.6 billion (in 2017 dollars) in insured losses, the insurance industry ended up paying out more in claims for this quake than it had collected in earthquake premiums over the preceding 30 years.

How long did it take to rebuild after the Northridge earthquake?

Immediately after the Northridge earthquake, Caltrans officials predicted that it would take 12 to 18 months to rebuild bridges on the Santa Monica Freeway and the region's five other damaged freeways.

How long did the 1971 Sylmar earthquake last?

The San Fernando earthquake occurred on February 9 at 6:00:41 am Pacific Standard Time (14:00:41 UTC) with a strong ground motion duration of about 12 seconds.

What was the worst earthquake in California?

2. 1906 San Francisco Earthquake

What was the last big earthquake in California?


July 2019. The Ridgecrest earthquakes that hit on July 4 and July 5 with a magnitude 6.4 and 7.1, respectively, were the most recent major earthquake in Southern California. The 7.1 lasted 12 seconds and was felt by about 30 million people.

How far is Los Angeles from the San Andreas Fault?

At its closest, this fault passes about 35 miles (56 km) to the northeast of Los Angeles.

What's the biggest earthquake in Los Angeles?

The 6.7 magnitude Northridge earthquake struck Los Angeles' San Fernando Valley on January 17, 1994, killing at least 57 people, injuring more than 7,000 and leaving an estimated $20 billion in damages, according to the US Geological Survey.

Is Los Angeles overdue for an earthquake?

California is overdue for a huge earthquake, seismologists say. Researchers at the U.S. Geological Survey analyzed data from the San Andreas, San Jacinto, Elsinore and Hayward faults as well as identified eight ground-rupturing quakes between 1800 and 1918.

How can you be prepared for an earthquake?

Prepare your home for an earthquake
  1. Keep closed-toed shoes with rubber soles under your bed.
  2. Move heavy objects to lower shelves.
  3. Remove or secure artwork hanging over beds or seating.
  4. Secure heavy appliances and shelving.
  5. Practice shutting off the gas, water, and power.

How many aftershocks were there in the Northridge earthquake?

The Northridge earthquake sequence consists of over 10,000 aftershocks (Hauksson et al., 1994); two of which had Mw6.