Earthquakes occur most frequently around the edges of tectonic plates, especially where two plates are either colliding or sliding past one another. The most active earthquake zones in the world are in areas around the edges of the Pacific oceanic plate, such as California, Indonesia, Japan and New Zealand.Know More
The areas where the two plates meet are known as faults, which can be normal, reverse or strike-slip faults depending on how the plates interact. Normal faults occur when two plates are pulling apart from one another and usually result in large, shallow earthquakes that typically only affect the immediate surrounding area. This type of tectonic plate boundary is mostly found deep under the oceans, so these earthquakes have little to no effect on humans.
Reverse faults occur where two plates are colliding with one another, such as in Indonesia where the Eurasian and Indo-Australian plates are colliding. Strike-slip faults occur when two plates are sliding past one another. One of the more famous examples of this type of fault is the San Andreas fault in California, which was created by the movement of the Pacific and North American plates.
Earthquakes can also occur in the middle of tectonic plates, but these are generally much shallower and not nearly as strong as those that occur along fault lines.Learn more about Earthquakes
Scientists can make predictions about earthquake probability, but there is no reliable way to foresee any given earthquake. Some people have claimed that they can predict earthquakes, but their claims do not withstand scientific scrutiny.Full Answer >
Earthquakes are the result of two of the Earth's crustal plates slipping past each other, otherwise known as plate tectonics. The vibrations caused by this sudden movement reverberate through the surrounding rock structures, and they are felt as tremors. Earthquakes are most common among the geologically active regions at the borders between plates of the Earth's crust, also known as fault zones.Full Answer >
According to the U.S. Geological Society, the area in the Earth's crust where an earthquake forms is called the hypocenter. Unpredictable in nature, earthquakes form when energy from the crust is released, causing vibrations on the surface of the earth. The magnitude of earthquakes can vary exponentially, and the stronger the magnitude, the more devastating the effects, especially on areas that are near the epicenter.Full Answer >
The surface of the earth is called the crust, and it is made up of plates, called tectonic plates, that move. Earthquakes happen when these plates bump, scrape or drag against each other.Full Answer >