“The ring is a huge geological feature and the primary source of major earthquakes and volcanoes in the world,” van der Pluijm said.
The Ring of Fire was rocked by 19 earthquakes in 24 hours. Two of the seismic disturbances registered more than 5 on the Richter scale. Experts predict more than 100 quakes measuring between 6 to 6.9 range for 2018; the figure currently stands at 75.
“It’s worth remembering that one magnitude 6.5 earthquake releases the same amount of energy as 30 magnitude-5.5 earthquakes,” Ben van der Pluijm, a geologist at the University of Michigan. “So, having 20 magnitude-5.5 EQs is the same as having one magnitude 6.3.”
Two earthquakes struck off the coast of the Greek island of Crete, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) said. The quakes, measuring 4.5 and 4.4 in magnitude, occurred four minutes apart. The first 53 kilometers south-west of Tympakion and the other 55 kilometers from Tympakion.
Major tremors over the last day included a 5.8-magnitude quake which struck 30 miles east-southeast of the Solomon Islands and another 5.5-magnitude hitting 31 miles east-northeast of Fiji’s Ndoi Island, according to the USGS.
“On a yearly basis we have roughly 1500 magnitude 5-5.9 earthquakes around the world,” van der Pluijm told Express. “So far we are at roughly 1100 for 2018. So from a tectonic energy standpoint, we are expecting a lot more earthquakes in the magnitude 5-7 range, and maybe half a dozen more magnitude 7-plus in 2018.”
The dreaded Ring of Fire stretches a total of 25,000 miles from New Zealand to the tip of South America in a horseshoe shape.
“The ring is a huge geological feature and the primary source of major earthquakes and volcanoes in the world,” van der Pluijm said. “For example, Japan is in the Ring of Fire and Japan is basically one giant volcano.”
Late last month, 25 quakes were recorded in a 24-hour period, including one measuring 7.1 off the coast of New Caledonia in the South Pacific. At one point, some 69 earthquakes reportedly struck the ring over a 48-hour period.
- Published in Sci & Tech