Sunday 16 September 2018

Magnitude 5.6 Earthquake in Western Australia.

Geoscience Australia recorded a Magnitude 5.6 Earthquake at a shallow depth close to Lake Muir in southern Western Australia, slightly before 1.00 pm local time (slightly before 5.00 am GMT) on Sunday 16 September 2018. This is one of the largest Earthquakes ever reported in Western Australia, and was felt over a wide area, but there are no reports of any damage or casualties.

The approximate location of the 16 September 2018 Western Australia Earthquake. USGS.
Despite being a long way from any active plate margins, Western Australia is quite prone to Earthquakes, particularly in a zone referred to as the South West Seismic Zone. The cause of these quakes is unclear; the area exists within an area of Archaean Shield known as the Yilgarn Block, which is thought to be between 2.94 and 2.63 billion years old, and which has no internal structures that seem to be related to the quakes.
 The South West Seismic Zone (pink). University of Western Australia.
Witness statements can help geologists to understand Earthquakes and the geological processes that cause them; if you felt this quake (or if you were in the area but did not, which is also useful information) you can report it to Geoscience Australia here.

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