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Archive for January 20th, 2010

Another Strong Quake Strikes Haiti as Expected

Posted by feww on January 20, 2010

Earthquake Measuring Up to 6.4 Mw Strikes Offshore 60 km  WSW of PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti

The earthquake struck 9.9 km (6.2 miles), but was poorly constrained, USGS/EHP reported.

The event occurred about 880 km of  a strong quake that struck near the Grand Cayman earlier today.

On January 13 after the first powerful earthquake struck, FEWW said:

FEWW Forecast: Another Major Earthquake Could Strike the Region Soon with a Probability of 60% [P ≥ 0.55]

FEWW Moderators also forecast earlier to day as follows:

The Gonave Microplate, near the boundaries of which this earthquake occurred, could produce more seismicity in 2010, with possibly another powerful quake measuring 7.4 to 7.6Mw striking its southern boundary.  Kingston, Jamaica could experience a powerful quake with a probability of 65 percent.

10-degree Map Centered at 20°N,75°W


Earthquake Location map. Source: USGS/EHP. Enhanced by FEWW.


Estimated Population Exposed to Earthquake Shaking.
Click Image for USGS PDF file.

Earthquake Details

  • Magnitude: 6.1 [EQ magnitude estimated by FEWW: 6.4 Mw]
  • Date-Time:
    • Wednesday, January 20, 2010 at 11:03:44 UTC
    • Wednesday, January 20, 2010 at 06:03:44 AM at epicenter
  • Location: 18.428°N, 72.875°W
  • Depth: 9.9 km (6.2 miles) (poorly constrained)
  • Region: HAITI REGION
  • Distances:
    • 60 km (35 miles) WSW of PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti
    • 95 km (60 miles) ENE of Les Cayes, Haiti
    • 160 km (100 miles) SSW of Cap-Haitien, Haiti
    • 1110 km (690 miles) SE of Miami, Florida
  • Location Uncertainty: horizontal +/- 6.5 km (4.0 miles); depth +/- 25.7 km (16.0 miles) –Possible error
  • Source: USGS NEIC (WDCS-D)
  • Event ID: us2010rsbb


USGS Shakemap. Click image to enlarge.


Seismic Hazard Map. Major Tectonic Boundaries: Subduction Zones -purple, Ridges -red and Transform Faults -green  (USGS). Click image to enlarge.

Major Tectonic Boundaries: Subduction Zones -purple, Ridges -red and Transform Faults -green. Location Map (USGS). Click image to enlarge.


Map of Haiti. USGS/EHP


Major Tectonic Boundaries: Subduction Zones -purple, Ridges -red and Transform Faults -green. Location Map (USGS). Click image to enlarge.

Tsunami Advisory:

The quake should have produced a small local tsunami. However, the NWS Pacific Tsunami Warning Center at Ewa Beach, Hawaii, at 11:11 UTC Wed Jan 20,  2010 said:

A destructive tsunami was not generated based on earthquake and historical tsunami data. This earthquake is located too far inland to generate a tsunami in the Caribbean.

The coordinates provided by NWSPTWC were: 18.6 NORTH 72.9 WEST.  And the Quake Location Details according to USGS were: 18.428°N, 72.875°W
Both sets of coordinates place the quake epicenter offshore Haiti, according to Google Earth.


Google Map of the Quake Location places the epicenter of the earthquake offshore Haiti (Hispaniola Island). Image may be subject to copyright. Click image to enlarge.

Related Links:

Posted in Cap-Haitien, earthquake, earthquake forecast, Gonave Microplate, Haiti earthquake, Les Cayes | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

China haze, temperature inversion, poor air quality

Posted by feww on January 20, 2010

Beijing Shrouded in Brown Haze

Coal-fired Power Plants and Essential Clean Air are Diametrically Opposite to Each Other


Haze blanketed Beijing, China, on January 18, 2010, when the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured this image. The entirely image is brown, as if covered by a thin film. The image also hints at a contributing factor to the poor air quality: a temperature inversion, contributing to the buildup of pollutants. NASA image courtesy the MODIS Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC. Caption by Holli Riebeek. Edited by FEWW


(MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite, January 18, 2010. The gray-brown haze extends from Beijing to the South China Sea from north to south and from Korea to central China from east to west (shown in the large image). This image shows the densely populated and industrialized North China Plain between Beijing and the Yangtze River, where the haze is so dense that it completely obscures the ground. NASA image courtesy the MODIS Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC. Caption by Holli Riebeek. Edited by FEWW

Posted in China weather, MODIS, temperature inversion, Terra satellite | Tagged: , , , , | 5 Comments »

Strong Quake Strikes Cayman Islands Region

Posted by feww on January 20, 2010

Earthquake Measuring up to 6.1 Mw Strikes Near Cayman Islands

Strong earthquake measuring up to M6.1 struck offshore near Cayman Islands about 70 km (45 miles) ESE of George Town,  Cayman Islands and about 880 km WNW of the powerful earthquake that devastated Port-au-Prince 8 days ago. The quake struck at a depth of about 10km on January 19, 2010 at 14:24 UTC.

Tsunami Report

There were no report of a tsunami in the area caused by this event.

Damage Report

The earthquake reportedly shook buildings in George town but there was no report of damage or injuries.

Previous Quakes

Grand Cayman was struck by a 6.8 Mw earthquake on December 14, 2004, three months after Hurricane Ivan had already raked the island. However, the quake caused only minor structural damage to some buildings.

FEWW Earthquake Forecast:

The Gonave Microplate, near the boundaries of which this earthquake occurred, could produce more seismicity in 2010, with possibly another powerful quake measuring 7.4 to 7.6Mw striking its southern boundary.  Kingston, Jamaica could experience a powerful quake with a probability of 65 percent.

10-degree Map Centered at 20°N,80°W


Earthquake Location map.
Source: USGS/EHP. Enhanced by FEWW. (Click Images to enlarge).


Seismic Hazard Map showing the west side  end of
the Gonave Microplate. USGS/EHP. Click image to enlarge.


Seismic Hazard Map of Haiti Region showing the east side of the Gonave Microplate, which is sandwiched between the North American and the Caribbean Plates .Source: USGS/EHP. Enhanced by FEWW. Click image to enlarge.

Earthquake Details

  • Magnitude: 5.8 [EQ magnitude estimated by FEWW: 6.1 Mw – USGS/EHP routinely downgrades earthquakes by about 0.3 Mw]
  • Date-Time:
    • Tuesday, January 19, 2010 at 14:23:38 UTC
    • Tuesday, January 19, 2010 at 09:23:38 AM at epicenter
  • Location: 19.020°N, 80.779°W
  • Depth: 10 km (6.2 miles)
  • Region: CAYMAN ISLANDS REGION
  • Distances:
    • 70 km (45 miles) ESE of GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands
    • 305 km (190 miles) WNW of Montego Bay, Jamaica
    • 345 km (215 miles) S of Cienfuegos, Cuba
    • 750 km (465 miles) S of Miami, Florida
    • 880 km WNW of the powerful earthquake that devastated Port-au-Prince on January 12, 2010
  • Location Uncertainty:  horizontal +/- 4.2 km (2.6 miles); depth fixed by location program
  • Source: USGS NEIC (WDCS-D)
  • Event ID: us2010rrbc

Related Links:

Posted in Cayman Islands quake, Cienfuegos, eathquakes, George Town earthquake, Haiti earthquake, Montego Bay | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »