El Heirro Update – Activity is Increasing! Stay Alert!

Activity over the last 48 hours has increased significantly both in frequency and intensity of earthquakes.  The FARO data is also suggesting increased deformation.  Please pay close attention East Coasters. Here is a recap diary of the most recent activity.

el Heirro3_29_13

2013-03-29 16:16 UTC
– A very powerful earthquake has been reported from El Hierro so far.
– People at the island told Julio that this felt as being the strongest so far
– Rockfall has been reported in different places.

2013-03-29 13:11 UTC
Pevolca has met and says in essence what we have been telling all day.
– As seismicity is still at a safe distance from the coast (what is safe ?) no other protective measures should be taken (see earlier Pevolca report for the initial measures below).
– Pevolca also confirms that the seismic activity is moving the the South-West. ER would call it South
– The strong earthquakes are continuing at a high frequency at the time of writing

2013-03-29 11:17 UTC

Impressive seismic activity
– The released energy since the start of this crisis has surpassed the total energy released during the initial eruptive crisis in 2011
– So far today (11 hours) we have counted 51 M3+ earthquakes
– 8 M4+ earthquake – 4 of which have been felt by the people (in fact everything has been felt, but people do not report it anymore). The strongest ones have also been felt at the neighboring islands like La Palma
– Remember the words of local seismologists/volcanologists shortly after the start of this crisis “this crisis will not last long as the feeding source does not have enough energy”. This remark is not meant to be offensive to those scientists, only that we have to be humble when we talk about the unknown aspects of nature.

elheirroseismic3_29

 

2013-03-29 11:00 UTC
– Relatively calm period at this moment
– The seabed depth of the current seismic activity is +2000 meter (+6000 ft) = safe + weakening the shaking impact

2013-03-29 09:42 UTC
– The strong M4.6 earthquake had his epicenter at approx. 6 km out of the coast (thats closer than previous strong earthquakes).
– Hypocenters show a tendency to become shallower again (17 km), with a few shallower ones.
– The seismic active area is still below a relatively flat seabed but the distance to the submarine volcanic hills is gradually decreasing.

2013-03-29 09:07 UTC
– Strong events are following each other up at a high rate today.

elheirroseisgraph3_29

2013-03-29 08:58 UTC
– The volcano does not give up so far. He continues to shake the greater epicenter area and some of these quakes can even be felt at other islands.
– 64 earthquakes listed by IGN so far (they only list the stronger ones now – the real number today must run already into the hundreds)
– Strongest earthquake so far today : M4.3 (initially quoted as M4.6)
– The hypocenters are again in the 20 km layer (like the crisis in mid-2012)
– Deformation is further increasing. The images below are from the Lighthouse GPS station (also western part of the island)
– Epicenters are a little more to the south today, which may explain the deeper hypocenters. Still far enough out of the coast to weaken the earthquake impact on the island. Red bullets are very shallow earthquakes. The red bullet in the Las Calmas sea is erroneous BUT we take special interest in the 2 shallow earthquakes below the South-Western coast of the island. They have been calculated at M2.0 and M2.2, strange … As these quakes are far away from the seismic area it looks to us that these are earthquakes which have been triggered by the deformation of the island. IGN (with a lot more data) will certainly know what is exactly was.
– The strong action is still continuing.

We will update as warranted.

 

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Pay Attention, USGS is not!, El Heirro Update

As we continue the monitor the situation in La Palma, What really struck us this morning is that USGS is not even showing ANY activity in the Canary Islands. We witnessed this the last time El Heirro was grumbling, NOTHING from USGS.  Here is the latest screenshot from the USGS EQ site, and as you will notice, even though they are supposed to be reporting and showing every quake over 2.5M, there are NO quakes showing in the Canary Islands.

usgs EQ 25 mar 13

UPDATE- El Heirro – March 25, 2013 – 10:00PST

The activity continues and is growing in both magnitude and frequency of harmonic quakes. You can monitor the situation closely at El Heirro Monitoring.  The likelihood of a new submarine eruption in the near future is increasing. Earthquakes and pulsating strong tremor continued with little changes, indicators of magma intruding into new dikes in the western rift zone. There is also a trend towards stronger quakes (about 20 magnitude 3+ events including a M4 this morning) and shallower earthquakes (many at around 11-12 km depth today). This suggests that magma is slowly breaking pathways upwards, i.e. towards the seafloor. The area has remained about 5 km off shore NW from the western tip of the island, ie. under the submarine prolongation of the volcano’s western rift zone. This is where now a new eruption should be expected, if the magma does not decide to migrate laterally once again.

quakes-el-hierro-250313-list.png (2)

So keep close watch if you are on the East Coast.  We have received questions about “how bad would it be if the worst case scenario would unfold. Our best guess, and it is a guess, is that a tsunami of 150’ could impact the east coast, with Florida and Georgia feeling the greatest impacts.  So to answer the question of where do you go and when, getting to elevations above 500’ ASL should minimize the danger. If the western face of El Heirro would suddenly calve as a part of an eruption, East Coasters may have 8 hours to act. The real concern we have is how fast MSM would report such an event, which could lose precious evacuation time, and at what time the event would occur. For example, if the eruption occurred at 12 AM or very early morning, people may simply not be aware the event occurred.

The situation remains Yellow, keep close watch.  You can also monitor real time EQ activity here, since USGS chooses not to even consider the danger.

EMSC-CSEM Earthquake Monitoring

More as we get it.

Eruption of the El Hierro Volcano in the Canary Islands? Heads Up East Coast

As we continue monitoring seismic events globally, we on occasion feel there is enough “unusual” activity to issue watches for potentially impacted areas.  Traditionally one of our greatest concerns is the La Palma volcano in the Canary Islands because of a very large risk that such an eruption would generate a potentially dangerous tsunami that would effect the entire east coast and doe so with less than 8 hours notice.

Such events are now occurring. In fact, there is now a Red Alert and evacuations going on in La Restinga .  Check out the map above of recent seismic activity in the area. There have been 155 earthquakes above magnitude 2 today (Saturday) alone. The seismic swarm continues with even increasing intensity, as to both the average magnitude and frequency of earthquakes, as well as amplitude of harmonic volcanic tremor which is oscillating between higher and lower phases. This might correspond to some sort of “stop and go” behavior of magma moving its way through new cracks in the lower crust beneath the island. The location of the epicenters of quakes, the presumed location of the current magma intrusions, is now about 5 km NW of the western tip of the island, and at depths between 10-17 km. No strong upwards trend is yet visible, but this could change quickly.
Today’s earthquake count so far:
– 155 earthquakes > mag 2
– including 15 between M3-3.5

Eventos_HIERRO_2D_31 (1)

Earthquakes continue with increasing magnitudes

Update Sat 23 Mar 16:41

The scenario of an eruption in the near future is becoming increasingly likely:
– Volcanic tremor continues, suggesting magma is still moving although mostly laterally for the time being to an area just north off the western tip of the island.
– Earthquakes continue at high frequency and increasing magnitudes (more than 90 quakes above magnitude 2, including 8 of magnitudes 3-3.5 so far today). Their epicenters have remained at 14-16 km depth mostly, with some shallower events as well.
– Deformation of the western part of the island continues to increase, with vertical uplift reaching about 5 cm on some stations in the westernmost part of the island. 

Again folks on the East Coast should pay attention over the next few days.  Check those bug out bags and remember the sooner you get to go the more likely you will get to safety.  If any changes occur we will post them as soon as possible.  this would reflect to a condition Yellow.

Is It Time to Arrest The CONgress?

I believe that this congress, by failing to deal with the sequester has, by definition, committed jointly and severally the crime of criminal negligence.

crim·i·nal neg·li·gence

  1. crime of harming somebody or something: the crime of causing injury or harm to a person or property as the result of doing something or failing to provide a proper or reasonable level of care.

By definition, the CONgress failed to provide a proper level of care which has resulted in arbitrary cuts totaling $85 Billion dollars. However, it goes without saying that these cuts are really damages to people and properties in the form of loss wages, idling of resources, and cuts to social programs.

I would wonder what would happen if citizens, especially in commonwealth states would bring charges of criminal negligence? Why commonwealth states? In commonwealth states all power resides originally in the people, and being derived from them, the several magistrates and officers of government, vested with authority, whether legislative, executive, or judicial, are their substitutes and agents, and are at all times accountable to them.   This means that ordinary citizens can present evidence to a local DA or SAG and demand a grand jury be convened. If the Grand Jury would follow the rules of law, the charge of criminal negligence against all members of CONgress is evident, which would require the Grand Jury to issue indictments and arrest warrants for those so indicted.

I wonder if there are any unemployed or under-employed young lawyers out there that are activists that would evaluate the feasibility of such actions.  I think we could all appreciate the effect ONE successful indictment would cause in the beltway bubble.

Just a Hee-Hee thought.