Yellowstone volcano (USA): magnitude 4.8 earthquake likely no precursor of new eruption
Mon, 31 Mar 2014, 17:5717:57 PM | BY: T
A magnitude 4.8 earthquake at shallow 7 km depth occurred yesterday morning with an epicenter located 4 miles north-northeast of Norris Geyser Basin in Yellowstone National Park. It was the largest quake since 1980 and occurred near the center of a region of recent ground uplift.
The recent earthquakes at Yellowstone
The event has sparked media reports that "Yellowstone might be erupting soon",- however, while this event could be a precursor to new activity, it is far from likely that this will actually happen. In addition, the next eruption at Yellowstone if it is going to occur in a foreseeable future, is most likely going to be a small event (not a supervolcano eruption!).
USGS published the following press release:
University of Utah Seismograph Stations
Released: March 30, 2014 08:15 AM MDT
The University of Utah Seismograph Stations reports that a light earthquake occurred at 06:34 AM on March 30, 2014 (MDT). The epicenter of the magnitude 4.8 shock was located 4 miles north-northeast of Norris Geyser Basin in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. This earthquake is part of a series of earthquakes that began in this area on Thursday, March 27. As of 8:15 am today, this series has included at least 25 earthquakes in addition to the main shock, with the largest of magnitude 3.1. The magnitude 4.8 main shock was reported felt in Yellowstone National Park and in the towns of West
Yellowstone and Gardiner, Montana.
Anyone who felt the earthquake is encouraged to fill out a survey form on either the Seismograph stations web site: www.quake.utah.edu or the U.S. Geological Survey web site: earthquake.usgs.gov.
Today's event is the largest earthquake at Yellowstone since February 22, 1980, and occurred near the center of a region of recent ground uplift described in a YVO Information Statement on February 18, 2014. The Yellowstone Volcano Observatory has been tracking this uplift episode for about 7 months.
As discussed in the March 3, 2014 YVO Monthly Update, seismicity in the general region of the uplift has been elevated for several months. A previous period of uplift in this area occurred between 1996 and 2003, and it was also accompanied by elevated seismicity.
A USGS field team is in Yellowstone and will visit the area near the earthquake's epicenter today. The team will look for any surface changes that the earthquake may have caused, and for possible effects to the hydrothermal system at Norris Geyser Basin.
Based on the style and location of today's earthquake, at this time YVO sees no indication of additional geologic activity other than continuing seismicity.
The Yellowstone Volcano Observatory (YVO) provides long-term monitoring of volcanic and earthquake activity in the Yellowstone National Park region. Yellowstone is the site of the largest and most diverse collection of natural thermal features in the world and the first National Park. YVO is one of the five USGS Volcano Observatories that monitor volcanoes within the United States for science and public safety.
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Fri, 2 Aug 2013, 10:43
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