Oklahoma Seismologist: Aftershocks Will Continue And Can Be Larger


Tuesday, November 8th 2011, 12:03 am
By: Dana Hertneky


Monday's tornadoes come as the ground is still rumbling and nerves are still frayed from this weekend's earthquakes. And clearly it's not over.

A seismologist with the Oklahoma Geological Society said the aftershocks will continue and there will be more that people can feel.

11/5/2011 Related Story: More Aftershocks Sunday, After Oklahoma's Largest Earthquake Saturday

11/5/2011 Related Story: 4.7 Magnitude Earthquake, Aftershocks Rumble Through Oklahoma

11/7/2011 Related Story: 4.7 Magnitude Earthquake Shakes Oklahoma

"They could be as large or larger," said Austin Holland with the OKGA. "Aftershocks can sometimes be nearly as large as the main shock."

"Although the 5.6 may have been the main shock, you can't know for certain," said Matt Holiday, a meteorology student at OU who runs the web site Firsthand Weather. He worries Saturday's quake may be a precursor that a bigger one may be coming.

"If the 5.6 was a foreshock, then if the main shock hasn't happened yet, it will be much larger than the 5.6 magnitude earthquake," Holiday said.

Holland agrees that's not out of the question.

"The most likely scenario is the earthquakes are going to get smaller and further apart," he said. "But it's possible to have another large earthquake."

The research Holland is doing now could help predict that in the future. But for now, there's no real way to know for sure.

"People want assurances that they won't have to go through this again, but we don't know what the future holds at this point,"Holland said.

That's why Holland said folks do need to prepare themselves for that another large quake that could be on the way.