Local seismologists and geologists say the 7.0-magnitude earthquake that struck Alaska should make people in the Pacific Northwest realize how catastrophic the threat to the great in our region is.
"We are in the earthquake country," said Scott Burns, geology professor at Portland State University. "Everybody should have a kit for the earthquake at home – we go into camping mode, we need water and food to keep you going."
It was an active morning at the USGS Cascades Volcano Observatory in Vancouver, when seismologist Wes Thelen observed the activities of Anchorage.
"You get 10 times more energy release," said Thelen for each higher degree. "That's just the size, but what you get is a much longer event, so it's strong for a long time."
Because of these factors, Thelen says the earthquake of the Cascadia Subduction Zone, which is the Pacific Northwest Overdue for will be a dramatically stronger earthquake.
Burns says the damage in Alaska should alarm people, but the situation in the Portland region is likely to be worse for the most part, as the metro area is dramatically more populated than Anchorage.
Scientists have been aware of the Alaskan threat of earthquakes in Alaska for decades, which has affected their building codes. Burns says the threat of earthquakes in Oregon has only recently been discovered, which could exacerbate the devastation, as many structures have been erected without knowledge of the region's seismic risk.