The Fault Of The San Andreas Fault System

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In the fall of 1989 on the seventeenth day of October at 5:04pm Pacific time, there was a fateful earthquake that claimed sixty three lives, created almost four thousand reported casualties and caused more than six billion in damages destroying many homes and businesses throughout the state of California. The epicenter of the earthquake originated in the Loma Prieta Mountains just outside of Santa Cruz, California. The fault that the earthquake occurred on is the San Andreas Fault system. Which has spider webs spanning approximately forty miles wide and runs north-west and south-east for over eight-hundred miles through California. This fault line forms the boundary of the Pacific plate and the North American Plate. The San Andreas…show more content…
Right meaning the line shifted right on the opposite side, or left when the opposite side shifted left. The Pacific plate is moving in a north-west direction at a rate of seven to eleven centimeters a year while the North American plate is moving west, south-west at a rate of approximately two to three centimeters per year. To support the aforementioned description, if an observer placed him or herself standing on the North American plate looking at the Pacific plate, the Pacific plate is moving to the right. The Loma Prieta earthquake of 1989 was the first major earthquake occurring on that fault since the previous major earthquake which was The Great San Francisco Earthquake of 1909. The 1909 Great San Francisco Earthquake caused significantly more deaths which generated up to an estimated three thousand, and caused more damage mostly from the fires that occurred in the aftermath. The 1909 earthquake occurred on the same fault however it had a much longer section of the fault slip and was reportedly a much larger earthquake in comparison because of that. Which is why many researchers believe that although the Loma Prieta was a very bad earthquake it was only a precursor for a larger one to come. There have been some fairly large slips in between
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