Next step is to investigate what triggered the earthquakes, both natural and man-made.
WFAA Channel 8 reporters Byron Harris and Marjorie Owens covered the recent interim report about the research findings of Southern Methodist University’s seismology team surrounding a recent series of earthquakes in the Irving, Texas area.
The Channel 8 report, “SMU study: Quakes shallow, concentrated at fault line,” covered a briefing with the press on Friday, Feb. 6, to explain progress on the team’s earthquake research.
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- Heather DeShon
- Brian Stump
- “Understanding recent North Texas seismicity”
- Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences at SMU
- SMU’s Dedman College
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Initial results reveal that the earthquakes that occurred near the site of the old Texas Stadium were relatively shallow and concentrated along a narrow two mile line that indicates a fault extending from Irving into West Dallas.
SMU and the United States Geological Survey shared the report with the mayors of Dallas and Irving spelling out preliminary information gleaned after SMU’s installation in January of more than 20 portable earthquake monitors around the earthquake sites. SMU seismologists Heather DeShon and Brian Stump, in the Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences, answered questions during the briefing with reporters.
The segment aired Feb. 6, 2015.
By Byron Harris and Marjorie Owens
Southern Methodist University has released preliminary results from a study spurred by the recent earthquakes that have rattled North Texas.
The quakes, which have primarily centered near the site of the old Texas Stadium in Irving, “were relatively shallow and concentrated along a narrow two mile line that indicates a fault extending from Irving into West Dallas,” read a statement based on SMU’s findings.
According to the statement, SMU and the United States Geological Survey shared their preliminary findings with the mayors of Dallas and Irving after the university installed 20 portable monitors around the area of the quakes’ epicenters.
“They’re moving a little bit north and they form a linear trend,” said SMU Seismologist Heather DeShon.
Instead of a random pattern of quakes inferred from distant sensors, more-refined data now suggests the January quakes happened in a more focused pattern of major quakes and aftershocks, east and north of the University of Dallas. The scientists estimate the fault that caused the quakes is two miles long and from three-to-five miles deep.
“In order to have an earthquake of 3.6 (as occurred in Irving in January), there has to be a fault there,” Dr. DeShon said.
The study is in its beginning phase, but SMU seismologist said the initial findings are an important start to their investigation.
“We can begin studying how this fault moves – both the amount and direction of motion,” he said.
The seismologists said the reason why the quakes have been felt in far North Texas is because of their relatively close proximity to the surface in the granite “basement.”
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By Margaret Allen
Senior research writer, SMU Public AffairsView Archive →