CORVALLIS, Ore - International earthquake expert and geologist Robert Yeats forecasted one week ago that one of the world's most at risk locations for a major destructive earthquake was the fault that runs through Haiti and near Port-au-Prince.
That forecast was made during an interview with Scientific American. Yeats, a professor emeritus at Oregon State University, said the death toll would be tremendous.
Andrew Meigs is one of Yeats' colleagues and teaches earthquake geology at OSU. His expertise includes researching earthquake history and finding active faults.
“A terrible disaster has befallen the people of Haiti and it reminds us that we have a similar kind of problem here and that we need to continue and expand our efforts,” said Meigs.
Meigs said the Northwest also sits on a plate boundary and is susceptible to a disastrous earthquake.
“The Pacific Northwest like the Caribbean region where the earthquake occurred, sits next to a plate boundary. Our plate boundary is called the Cascadia Subduction Zone,”said Meigs
“It’s the kind of plate boundary that generates the world’s largest earthquakes and an analogy for the earthquake we could expect to occur here in the Northwest is something like the 2004 earthquake in Sumatra,” said Meigs.
Meigs said several agencies in the Northwest have plans in place to help the region withstand a catastrophic earthquake but efforts need to be increased.