Tri-City Ledger -

By Joe Thomas
Ledger Editor 

New seizement stations in area

Geologists installing four detection devices after area has fifth earthquake in a month


March 28, 2019

Joe Thomas

Geologists work to set up station off of Oil Well Road in Flomaton

A fifth earthquake in the area in less than a month has prompted geologists to install four temporary seizement stations from near Jay and into Escambia County, Ala., in hopes of gaining more information on the recent earthquake activity.

The first earthquake was reported March 6 in an area between Jay and Century; a second was reported March 11 just outside Flomaton near the intersection of Old Fannie Road and Welka Road; the third was reported March 12 in Flomaton; the fourth was March 13 just south of Pollard; and this past Sunday a 2.7 magnitude earthquake was reported near Century.

The largest of the four occurred on March 11, and registered 3.1. No damage has been reported, but residents in the area have reported the shaking thinking it was everything from a car running into their house to a train derailment.

Tuesday, a team from the University of Memphis along with Sandy Eversole with the Geological Survey of Alabama were at a location off of Oil Well Road near Flomaton to install one of the four monitoring devices.

Eversole said the temporary seizement stations will include two in Florida and two in Alabama. She noted there is one permanent seizement station near Brewton.

She said the new monitors will provide a clearer picture of the dates, the locations and the depths of the earthquakes.

"They will give us more detailed data so we can get a better picture," Eversole said Tuesday at the site off of Oil Well Road.

She said there are a number of faults in the area that begin in Escambia County, Fla., and head northwest, which is called the Pollard-Foshee fault system. She also said there are records over the years of minor earthquakes along the fault system.

She noted the University of Memphis is providing the equipment to install the new temporary seizement stations.

"It constantly collects data," Eversole said. "The software differentiates between background noise, like trains, and earthquakes. It will help us understand what causes the seismic storms we've recently seen."

She said the data collected from these sites can be monitored by going to the Geological Survey System of Alabama website.


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