USGS Says Don't Worry About Recent Quakes
In this Oct. 19, 1989 file photo, Workers check the damage to Interstate 880 in Oakland, Calif., after it collapsed during the Loma Prieta earthquake two days earlier. Oct. 19, 2009, marks the 20th anniversary of the Loma Prieta earthquake.
China's 6.9 earthquake on Wednesday night, along with recent deadly quakes in Haiti, Chile and Mexico have many people living in quake-prone California worried about a potential quake trend.
Fear not, California. We're well within the normal range, say USGS officials, and they have the data to back them up.
There has been an average of 15 annual earthquakes worldwide with a magnitude 7 or greater, dating back to the year 1900.
"While the number of earthquakes is within the normal range, this does not diminish the fact that there has been extreme devastation and loss of life in heavily populated areas," said scientist Dr. Michael Blanpied.
Scientists say the 2010 shakers have not raised the likelihood of future major earthquakes, adding quickly that the likelihood has not decreased either.