The Ring of Fire has witnessed 69 cases of significant seismic activities on Sunday and Monday, raising fears that the “Big One” is not too far away, and that California might be its biggest victim. The disaster zone comprises of volcanoes and earthquake regions around the edge of the Pacific Ocean, with 452 volcanoes located in this belt which stretches from South and North America to Japan and New Zealand. The earthquake affected Indonesia, Bolivia, Fiji and Japan, but did not reach the western coast of U.S. The 16 earthquakes were all above 4.5 magnitude, and thus classify as significant.
The Ring of Fire is the meeting point of two of the Earth’s biggest tectonic plates, which has caused a number of devastating earthquakes in this region over the past few years. This has given rise to fears that California might be receiving a catastrophic earthquake of a magnitude around 9.0, which may trigger a Tsunami. Researchers at Colorado State University said that California is an easy meat for these disasters, and the activities over the two days could be a warning for the Western state, which is long overdue for a major earthquake. California has witnessed many high magnitude quakes in the past 100 years, with the San Francisco earthquake in 1906 being particularly destructive, resulting in the death of around 3,000 people. The Big One refers to a destructive earthquake on the Cascadia Subduction, which may leave California and the western coast ragged in just a few minutes. The U.S. Geological Survey revealed that Fiji was the worst hit region since Monday morning, with Venezuela and Trinidad also struck by a 7.3 magnitude quake on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, activity from Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano has slowed down, which comes as a relief for the residents worried by months of high-level activity. The volcano, which caused continuous flow of lava to the settlements, causing heavy damage, has finally returned to an almost normal level of activity. The U.S. Geological Survey, after observing the lull in its activity for a week, downgraded its alert level to “watch” from “warning”. The volcano also got a rating of orange on the aviation color code, which means that flight conditions won’t be impacted for the time being. The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory also reported negligible activity regarding the volcano in its most recent update.