Wednesday 25 September 2013

Magnitude 3.2 Earthquake in Love County, south Oklahoma.

The United States Geological Survey recorded a Magnitude 3.2 Earthquake at a depth of 5 km, in Love County in south Oklahoma, roughly 8 km to the southwest of Overbrook, at approximately 6.40 am local time (approximately 11.40 am GMT) on Monday 23 September 2013. This is a moderate Earthquake, unlikely to have caused any damage or injuries, but felt as far away as Sherman, 70 km to the southeast.

The approximate location of the 23 September 2013 Love County Earthquake. Google Maps.

The quake appears to have occurred on an area very close to the Muenster-Waurika Fault, a part of the Meers Fault System. Southern Oklahoma is being compressed in an east-west direction by the expansion of the Atlantic Ocean to the east and subduction along the North American Plate margin to the west. This causes slip-strike faulting along the Meers Fault, with deposits to the west being forced up over rocks to the east. This does not happen smoothly, and the uplifting rocks have been split into a number of fault-bounded blocks, which move separately of each-other vertically. The Muenster-Waurika Fault is one of these faults.

Representation of the Meers Fault System in southern Oklahoma, showing the position of the Muenster-Waurika Fault. Gay (2003).

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