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Paper Topic:

earthquake preparedness


TO : Matt Blunt , Governor of Missouri



SUBJECT : Preparing Missouri for a Possible 8 .0 Earthquake

Good day

It has come to our attention that the state of Missouri has yet to propose a plan on how to prepare itself for the event of an earthquake more so of one with a magnitude of 8 .0 in the Richter scale . We believe that it is important to prepare our state for a strong earthquake as this may lessen the severity of the damages that can be incurred , as

br well as saving more lives

Prediction of an Earthquake

We believe that a hypothetical earthquake whose epicenter would be in the Mississippi River , in between the states Missouri and Tennessee , can gravely affect the state of Missouri along with neighboring states Arkansas , Illinois , Indiana , Kentucky , Mississippi and Tennessee . This is because of the New Madrid Fault System , which crosses five state lines and cuts across the Mississippi River in three places and the Ohio River in two places . The said fault extends 120 miles southward from the area of Charleston , Missouri , and Cairo , Illinois , through New Madrid and Caruthersville , following Interstate 55 to Blytheville and on down to Marked Tree , Arkansas (About the New Madrid Fault , 2002 . The active fault system , or seismic zone , averages more than 200 measured events per year , in areas ranging from central Missouri to the far southeastern bootheel of Missouri . Although most of these earthquakes are only detectable by sensitive instruments , some earthquakes are strong enough to crack plaster in buildings and disrupt southeast Missouri once or twice every 18 months (History of Earthquakes in Missouri , 2007

Imminent Dangers

One of the dangers of these earthquakes are its effects to the soil earthquake vibrations that pass through soil makes it lose its properties as a solid and take on those of a semi-liquid like quicksand a process called liquefaction (How Earthquakes are Measured Their Effects on St . Charles County , 2002 . Liquefaction is expected to happen mostly in the places where the Mississippi River has moved around depositing sandy silt and gumbo clay . In these areas , the earthquake will send the water to the surface , creating quicksand and eliminating the soil 's ability to support loads (Patterson , 2006 . Because there are about 11 million people live in the New Madrid Seismic Zone , this would pose a big threat to the people houses and buildings would collapse due to a lack of stable foundation

Preventive Measures

Although it is impossible to predict an earthquake , scientists have extrapolated from the New Madrid Seismic Zone history that the Great New Madrid Earthquake of 1811-1812 happens every 200 to 300 years . Thus , it had been predicted that it in between 2010 until 2020 , another series earthquakes would occur at 8 .0 or more in magnitude (About The New Madrid Fault , 2002 . An 8 .0 magnitude , to give you an idea , can temporarily or permanently change the flow of rivers , springs and even wells . This can pose as a big problem...

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