Study: Lake Tahoe May Be Due For Large Quake

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(Sacramento, CA)
Friday, May 15, 2009

Scientists looked at three major faults and determined that earthquakes have historically happened every 2,000 to 3,000 years in the Tahoe basin. But they found that the largest fault, which runs along the west shore of the lake, appears to have last ruptured around 4,500 years ago. 

That suggests the region has gone longer than usual without a quake. 

The research comes from scientists at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego. 

Danny Brothers is a co-author of the report. He predicts the next quake could be as high as a magnitude 7. 

“And some scientists have modeled what would happen in Lake Tahoe if such an event were to happen and they predicted tsunami waves up to 10-feet high.” 

But scientists aren’t able to pinpoint when the next quake will hit. Brothers says it could be another thousand years from now.