MU Geology Department Hosts Lectures about Earthquakes
COLUMBIA - Two hundred years ago, the New Madrid earthquakes hit southeastern Missouri and a large portion of southern United States.
The University of Missouri Geology Department hosted lectures today to discuss the quakes that hit in 1811 and 1812. Speakers talked about what the area was life in 1811 before the earthquakes hit.
A reader's theatre presented eye witness accounts of the New Madrid earthquakes and their aftermath.
Others provided their opinions of the cause for the earthquakes and if Missouri would be prepared if another one should hit.
"An earthquake of of this size would not only disrupt the commerce, killing fairly a large number of people, but even more than that... it would interrupt the commerce for the area in the entire mid-America area," said Dr. Gould, a senior professor of structural engineering at Washington University in St. Louis. "Because of the nature of the soil, would affect actually most of the eastern two thirds of the country and cause large scale economic disruption."
Dr. Gould said another earthquake of this size is not expected to occur for another 100 to 200 years, but people can prepare now by designing and building structures to withstand it.
He also said people can do things in their homes, schools or businesses to reduce the effect of the quakes, like restraining water heaters, shelves and other objects from falling.