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Opinion

Earthquakes detected in Md. all the time

It's not often that people can actually feel an earthquake in Maryland ("Canadian Earthquake felt in Maryland," June 23), but that's not to say they aren't recorded almost every day. Just check out the Maryland seismic station (search online for "Maryland seismic") that's located at Soldiers Delight and operated by the Maryland Geological Survey (part of the Department of Natural Resources). Not only can you look at a real-time seismic recording, you can also find information about past seismic events in Maryland and worldwide.

Go to "View today's record," then click on "June 23" to see the Canadian earthquake. Then, try "Feb. 27" to see the magnitude 8.5 that hit Chile earlier this year.

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The Soldiers Delight station is one of thousands around the world that help pinpoint the location and magnitude of earthquakes — information that most of us take for granted. Sadly, funds for monitoring devices like seismographs or stream and tidal gauges are threatened in today's economy. But the usefulness of such monitoring both for education and for informing sound policy is indisputable.

David Vanko, Towson

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The writer is a geology professor and dean of Science and Mathematics at Towson University.


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