SAN DIEGO —
In a new study, seismologists found that California is experiencing an earthquake on average every three minutes.
Dr. Pat Abbott is a San Diego State University professor emeritus who is not involved with the study but says the research can help our understanding of the earth.
“The real thing we'd like to know is when is the ‘big one’ is coming and we have zero ability to predict [that] so here's another approach,” said Abbott. “Let’s learn a whole lot about small earthquakes.”
Researchers went back through 10 years of data - including the Easter 2010 Baja California earthquake that shook Southern California from Calexico to San Diego.
They primarily focused on small earthquakes and found we in California experience about 10 times more earthquakes than previously thought.
Abbott says there's little reason to worry.
“You’ve already felt it all. So, in other words it doesn’t change what you felt, or buildings felt, but it increases our knowledge of how restless the earth is and how much activity is going on there,” he said.
The research doesn't indicate whether we could see more earthquakes in the future or if any of them will be “the big one.”
“In a way it doesn’t surprise me in the sense that we know earth is restless and rocks below the surface they move more. It's just quantifying movements that are greater than we realized.”