Fault Line Runs Right Through Oklahoma City

Thursday, November 10th 2011, 12:35 am
By: News 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- With all the earthquakes lately, a lot of us may not know there's a fault line that runs right underneath Oklahoma City.

It's called the Nemaha fault and chances are pretty good it runs near your house.

Seismologists say there's a lot of questions still left to be answered about the fault, but it does have a history of causing quakes.

The Nemaha fault runs right through Oklahoma City, under the I-35 and I-40 interchange, slips by the News 9 studios at Kelley and Wilshire and underneath Dr. Freddie Cudjoe's home.

"Oh lord this is something!" said Dr. Cudjoe when she learned her home was on the fault line.

Dr. Cudjoe has lived in this house since 1963 but she says she does feel a little jolt now and then.

"Two or three a year," she said.

Seismologists, including Austin Holland, have been studying the fault for years.

"We know that the fault could possibly have earthquakes on it," said Holland.

As a matter of fact, the state's largest earthquake before this week was caused by slippage along the Nemaha fault. That was back in 1952.

The most recent quakes were along the Seminole Uplift.

"Can't get away from the faults here in Oklahoma," said Holland.

Still this new information is a bit unsteadying for Dr. Cudjoe.

"What implications does that have for the future, for my future here?" she asked.

According to the USGS there's a three- to four-percent chance of having an earthquake on the fault in the next 100 years.

The fault runs north through Topeka, Kansas, all the way to Lincoln, Nebraska.