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While Waiting For The Big One

© Knut Egil Wang

San Andreas Fault is the world’s most famous fault stretching approximately 1,300 kilometers from Bombay Beach by Salton Sea in Southern California to Shelter Cove on Northern California’s Lost Coast.

Through myths and films, Hollywood has made San Andreas Fault the most notorious fault line in the world. In real life, things evolve quite differently from many apocalyptic movie plots.  Relatively small plate movements cause earthquakes that might be damaging enough, but it will, after all, take millions of years and millions of earthquakes to move Los Angeles past San Francisco, further up past Canada and subsume it under the earth’s crust. However, in our time, there is always one question that looms large for Californians: When and where will the next Big One hit?

California has a 99.7 % chance of having a magnitude 6.7 or larger earthquake during the next 30 years*, and it will most likely happen along the San Andreas Fault.
It is also more likely to happen sooner than later. It might be bigger than anything ever measured in California.
109 years ago the 8.0 “Great Quake” devastated San Francisco. The southern end of the SanAndreas Fault, from Los Angeles towards Salton Sea, has not had such a stress‐relieving quake in 335 years. These mega‐quakes happen about every 150 years along the San Andreas Fault**. Southern California is overdue.

* The Uniform California Earthquake Rupture Forecast (UCERF)
** Los Angeles Times

All images are photographed in the San Andreas Rift Zone along the fault line from Salton Sea to Shelter Cove. This project is a part of Norwegian Journal of Photography and was funded by Fritt Ord.

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