VOA News – Massive Earthquake in Asia a Geological Rarity
Geologists describe Sunday’s powerful earthquake in the Indian Ocean as a once-in-a-generation event.
The U.S. Geological Survey says the 8.9 magnitude earthquake that triggered the devastating tsunami, or tidal wave, occurred at a depth of 10 kilometers, and was centered west of the Indonesian island of Sumatra, some 1,600 kilometers northwest of Jakarta.
“This is actually the fifth-largest [seismic] event since 1900. It is the largest since the Prince William Sound earthquake in Alaska of 1964. It is pretty rare,” said Julie Martinez, a USGS geophysicist in the western U.S. state of Colorado.