Earthquakes in North Dakota are Not Unheard Of

Bismarck - A number of strong earthquakes have hit and shook the world -- and all within the past couple of days.
Iraq and Iran -- Cost Rica and Japan. 

As Heidi Werosta tells us -- those earthquakes were felt right here in North Dakota.

Earthquakes... the ground shakes with little to no warning causing massive destruction where it hits. 

Elliot Bannister, Ft. Yates Resident, says, "I've been seeing footage and news of Iran and Iraq of the past couple of days and it's incredibly sad that they've lost hundreds and hundreds of people."

With all of the recent seismic activity it is not unheard of for North Dakota to get earthquakes, although it is rare.

Bannister says,"Well I haven't noticed anything so far."

That's because Bannister has only been here for a few years. But actually... there have been a few reported. 

Fred Anderson, North Dakota Geological Survey, says, "We've had 13 recorded earthquakes that have occurred in the state."

The last recorded earthquake was in 2012 just southeast of Williston and had a magnitude of a 3.3.

Despite a history of quakes, North Dakota is one of the states that sees the least seismic activity, next to Florida. 

Anderson says, "The earthquakes that occur in North Dakota, we believe are naturally occurring. The frequency of the seismic events that occur, the character of their seismic signature."

Interestingly enough, North Dakota's seismographs picked up on the shaking below the ground just a few minutes after the Iraq/Iran earthquake struck. 

"From that earthquake, it was about 20 minutes or so for the earthquake energy to arrive here in North Dakota as it traveled here around the earth," says Anderson.

Overall, the ground is fairly solid in North Dakota because we are in the middle of a tectonic plate. But for those in Iran and Iraq it sure is...

"...Going to be a big rebuilding struggle and and I hope the international community can get involved and support them in that," says Bannister. 

On the off chance you do feel an earthquake, you are supposed to call the North Dakota Geological Survey. 


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