Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Louis XIV's message for the royal baby

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Macron hopes for breakthrough on trade tensions during US visit

Read more

THE DEBATE

Macron meets Trump: A state visit with discord on the horizon?

Read more

ENCORE!

Music show: Mahalia, Ariana Grande & Willie Nelson

Read more

FOCUS

Tramadol: Cameroon’s low-budget opioid crisis

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

EU citizens’ consultations: Macron’s efforts to renew Europe

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Strengthening ties Down Under: The man charged with promoting Australia in France

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Jagland: ‘Would be disastrous if Russia pulls out of Council of Europe’

Read more

IN THE PRESS

Much ado about nothing? Actress Natalie Portman's boycott of 'Jewish Nobel awards' sparks backlash

Read more

Study predicts huge Mediterranean quake

Latest update : 2008-03-10

Scientists say an overlooked fault in the eastern Mediterranean is likely to produce an earthquake and tsunami every 800 years as powerful as the one that destroyed Alexandria in AD 365.

Using radiocarbon dating techniques, simulations and computer models, the researchers recreated the ancient disaster in order to identify the responsible fault, they said in a study published in the journal Nature Geoscience on Sunday.

 

"We are saying there is probably a repeat time of 800 years for this kind of earthquake," said Beth Shaw, a seismologist at the University of Cambridge, who led the study.

 

Scientists study past earthquakes in order to determine the future likelihood of similar large shocks. Identifying the fault for the AD 365 earthquake and tsunami is important for the tens of millions of people in the region, Shaw said.

The fault close to the southwest coast of Crete last produced a big enough quake to generate a tsunami about 1300, which means the next powerful one could come in the next 100 years, she added in a telephone interview.

 

Shaw and her colleagues calculate the likely intervals by measuring the motion of either side of the fault to gauge how often such large earthquakes would have to occur to account for that level of motion, she said.

 

Their computer model suggested an 8 magnitude quake on the fault would produce a tsunami that inundates the coastal regions of Alexandria and North Africa, the southern coast of Greece and Sicily all the way up the Adriatic to Dubrovnik, Shaw said.

 

This would be similar to the ancient quake in AD 365 that caused widespread destruction in much of Greece and unleashed a tsunami that flooded Alexandria and the Nile Delta, likely killing tens of thousands of people, she said.

"This is consistent with the historical record of the tsunami," she said.
 

Date created : 2008-03-09

COMMENT(S)