A NASA-led study has found that 2014 earthquake of magnitude 5.1 has severely impacted earth’s crust across a bigger area than expected in the northern Los Angeles Basin and northern Orange County. The researchers have also found that strain is in deeper faults meaning there is a risk of more earthquakes in future.
Study’s lead researcher Andrea Donnellan, a geophysicist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, said that the team has reached at the above conclusion after measuring the area deformed in the earthquake that took place on March 28, 2014. Using GPS and NASA airborne radar data, the researchers have carried out the measurements.
As per the researchers, the earthquake caused a lot of damage. It is estimated that the quake led to $12 million in damage. The researchers said, “Most of the damage occurred within a 3.7-mile radius of the epicenter, with a substantial amount of damage south of the main rupture”.
The damage has been so intense that the researchers have cautioned that even moderate earthquakes near Los Angeles can lead to ground deformation and damage to water. Donnellan said that the earthquake faults in the area are a part of systems of faults. Therefore, if earthquake will take place in future than it can cause strain on the fault system.
Study’s co-author Lisa Grant of UC Irvine has affirmed that study findings can prove beneficial in knowing more of earthquake risk and disaster planning.