2011 began with a bang when a 7.0 earthquake struck Argentina, 6:56:59 AM local time. Since the epicenter was over 350 miles deep, most locations felt little shaking. Is this an omen of big things to come this year? Who knows? Though it is interesting to see the first day of the new year experience such a significant event.
Yes, it's true, more earthquakes than usual struck in 2010. Because many events clustered together during the first seven months, it furthered magnified the data. It could have been ho-hum – maybe – if they petered out, but they didn't. Instead they continued to peg the high side.
Something unique occurred July 23rd. Three massive earthquakes – 7.3, 7.6 and 7.4 – struck the Philippines in rapid succession, like seismic gunfire. Since then thousands of aftershocks have hit the same area.
Other quakes shook areas with rare prior events. Yesterday's Indiana 3.8 shake was called "highly irregular, extremely rare, unprecedented". This moderate event was strong enough to crack the Earth's surface and felt in parts of Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin and Kentucky. (...)
Not only has a significant amount of quakes occurred, but extraordinary numbers of people have perished in them. Over a quarter million lives have been lost this year when only 10,000 is typical.
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