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Swarm of earthquakes strikes Mount St. Helens

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Swarm of earthquakes strikes Mount St. Helens

Post by Harry on Tue May 10, 2016 2:54 pm

Swarm of earthquakes strikes Mount St. Helens

By Madison Park, CNN

Updated 1207 GMT (2007 HKT) May 7, 2016

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People remain outside a building during a strong quake in Santiago on September 16, 2015. A strong 7.2-magnitude earthquake struck the center of Chile on Wednesday, local seismologists said, triggering a tsunami alert, sparking panic and shaking buildings. AFP PHOTO /VLADIMIR RODAS (Photo credit should read VLADIMIR RODAS/AFP/Getty Images)
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Mount St. Helens is a volcano in the state of Washington, seen here in 2004. It erupted in 1980, spewing out more than 1 cubic kilometer of material. Scientists believe, by comparison, that Martian supervolcanoes could spout 1,000 cubic kilometers of volcanic material.
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Security personel walk past a collapsed building following a 6.7 magnitude earthquake, in Imphal on December 4, 2015. At least eight people were killed and scores injured January 4, when a strong 6.7 magnitude earthquake struck northeast India, sending panicked residents fleeing into the streets even hundreds of kilometres away in Bangladesh. AFP PHOTO/ BIJU BORO / AFP / BIJU BORO (Photo credit should read BIJU BORO/AFP/Getty Images)
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(CNN)In the past eight weeks, more than 130 small earthquakes have trembled beneath the surface of Mount St. Helens.
At this point, "there is absolutely no sign that it will erupt anytime soon, but the data we collect tells us that the volcano is still very much alive," the U.S. Geological Survey said.
Seismologists reported that there are no anomalous gases, and no signs that the collection of magma, which is the molten rock beneath the surface of the Earth, is getting inflated in the recent swarm of earthquakes at the volcano.
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A 7.9 earthquake in the Tokyo-Yokohama area of Japan killed 142,800. The quake, which took place on September 1, 1923, caused firestorms and generated a tsunami.
An estimated 200,000 people were killed when a 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit Haiyuan County, China, on December 16, 1920. Here, Muslims pray outside a mosque in Haiyuan in 2007.
227,898 people were killed on December 26, 2004, when a magnitude-9.1. quake hit Sumatra. This was the third-largest earthquake measured since 1900. Almost 2 million people were displaced by the earthquake and resulting tsunami.
On July 27, 1976, a magnitude-7.5 earthquake killed an estimated 242,769 people in Tangshan, China. Unofficial estimates put the toll at much higher, perhaps 655,000 deaths.
A magnitude-7.0 earthquake struck Haiti on January 12, 2010. Official estimates put the death toll at 316,000 people, but other estimates suggest substantially lower casualties -- perhaps 230,000 or lower. More than 1 million people were displaced.
70,000 people were killed or presumed dead on May 31, 1970, when a 7.9 earthquake hit Chimbote, Peru.
When 72,000 people were killed by a magnitude-7.2 earthquake in Messina, Italy, more than 40% of the city's population was killed. The December 28, 1908, quake caused a tsunami and was felt throughout Sicily.
86,000 people were killed on October 8, 2005, when a magnitude-7.6 earthquake slammed northern Pakistan. The heaviest damage occurred in parts of Kashmir, where entire villages were destroyed.
The magnitude-7.9 earthquake that struck eastern Sichuan, China on May 12, 2008, killed 87,587 people and was felt in parts of Bangladesh, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.
A statue of Turkmenistan's former President Saparmurad Niyazov sits in front of the earthquake memorial in Ashgabat, 13 February 2007. Almost all the brick buildings in Ashgabat, collapsed and 110,000 people were killed when a magnitude-7.3 earthquake struck October 5, 1948.
A 7.9 earthquake in the Tokyo-Yokohama area of Japan killed 142,800. The quake, which took place on September 1, 1923, caused firestorms and generated a tsunami.
An estimated 200,000 people were killed when a 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit Haiyuan County, China, on December 16, 1920. Here, Muslims pray outside a mosque in Haiyuan in 2007.
227,898 people were killed on December 26, 2004, when a magnitude-9.1. quake hit Sumatra. This was the third-largest earthquake measured since 1900. Almost 2 million people were displaced by the earthquake and resulting tsunami.
On July 27, 1976, a magnitude-7.5 earthquake killed an estimated 242,769 people in Tangshan, China. Unofficial estimates put the toll at much higher, perhaps 655,000 deaths.
A magnitude-7.0 earthquake struck Haiti on January 12, 2010. Official estimates put the death toll at 316,000 people, but other estimates suggest substantially lower casualties -- perhaps 230,000 or lower. More than 1 million people were displaced.
70,000 people were killed or presumed dead on May 31, 1970, when a 7.9 earthquake hit Chimbote, Peru.
When 72,000 people were killed by a magnitude-7.2 earthquake in Messina, Italy, more than 40% of the city's population was killed. The December 28, 1908, quake caused a tsunami and was felt throughout Sicily.
86,000 people were killed on October 8, 2005, when a magnitude-7.6 earthquake slammed northern Pakistan. The heaviest damage occurred in parts of Kashmir, where entire villages were destroyed.
The magnitude-7.9 earthquake that struck eastern Sichuan, China on May 12, 2008, killed 87,587 people and was felt in parts of Bangladesh, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.
A statue of Turkmenistan's former President Saparmurad Niyazov sits in front of the earthquake memorial in Ashgabat, 13 February 2007. Almost all the brick buildings in Ashgabat, collapsed and 110,000 people were killed when a magnitude-7.3 earthquake struck October 5, 1948.

Although there are no signs of an imminent eruption, the volcano is recharging, scientists say.
Mount St. Helens is in Washington state, 95 miles south of Seattle and about 55 miles northeast of Portland, OR.
The earthquakes have been measured at a magnitude of 0.5 or less and the largest was at 1.3. They've been measured about 1.2 to four miles underneath the surface. With such small magnitudes and such depths, you wouldn't be able to feel the earthquakes on the surface.

But it's not the magnitude that has gotten scientists attention -- it's the frequency.
They've become increasingly common since March 14, "reaching nearly 40 located earthquakes per week," according to the USGS.
The eruption of Mount St. Helens: Mount St. Helens erupted in Washington state on May 18, 1980, triggered by an earthquake.
The eruption of Mount St. Helens: Mount St. Helens erupted in Washington state on May 18, 1980, triggered by an earthquake.
The USGS says the volcano's collection of magma is re-pressurizing. The process can continue for years without an eruption. Scientists have seen similar patterns of small earthquake swarms in 2013, 2014 and in the 1990s, according to the USGS.
Mount St. Helens erupted on May 18, 1980, blowing off more than 1,000 feet from the top of the mountain, leaving a huge crater and spewing hot ash across the Northwest. It killed 57 people, ignited forest fires from the scattering of hot ash and caused floods as the snow melted from mountain tops.
Since then, Mount St. Helens is one of the closely monitored volcanoes on the planet.

CNN's Dave Alsup contributed to this report.

Harry
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