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Is the 'Big One' 15 Years Late and Counting?

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It seems the San Andreas fault has a habit of shaking us up pretty badly once every 137 years, and scientists from UC Irvine believe we are long overdue for the "Big One." The last "massive" earthquake to rumble along the infamous fault line was in 1857, "when one struck at an estimated magnitude of 7.9," according to an AP article in the Long Beach Press-Telegram. That means the next major quake is now 15 years behind schedule on the San Andreas; the 1994 Northridge Earthquake, whose 15-year-anniversary was last weekend, was a magnitude 6.7, however it was mainly centered on the Northridge (sometimes called Pico) Thrust, not the San Andreas. Several recent small earthquakes are serving as a reminder that here in Southern California we've built our cities on Mother Nature's turf, and the "Big One" could hit us at any moment--one very "Big" reason to focus on preparedness and safety.