Chile quake shock reaches our shores
YESTERDAY'S shattering earthquake in Chile was picked up by a monitoring station in Co Wicklow.
Tom Blake, experimental officer with the School of Cosmic Physics, run by the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, said the earthquake was one of the most powerful on record. "Without a shadow of a doubt it is one of the most powerful recorded. Bear in mind, the strongest ever recorded was 9.6, this is 8.8."
"The 9.6 event occurred in 1960 and that started the whole movement towards tsunami alert systems across the Pacific."
Mr Blake said the geographic region was known for very powerful earthquakes. "It is where you have two plates hitting off each other."
The Institute started seismic monitoring on behalf of the State in 1978 and will increase the number of monitoring stations from two to six this year.
Its outreach programme, the Irish National Seismic Network, has measuring equipment in 50 schools.
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"I have already been contacted by some of the teachers who say they have recorded it on their systems, which the children will see when they go into school on Monday morning," Mr Blake said.
Events in Chile are being monitored by the Irish Embassy in Buenos Aires in Argentina. Ireland also has a consulate in Santiago.